An MP and mayor have heaped praise onto the police and trading standards after a three-month closure order was issued to a shop selling illegal vapes.

George Freeman, MP for Mid-Norfolk, and mayor for Dereham, Hugh King, were speaking after The Green Shop in Norwich Street was issued the closure order earlier this month - the first time in Norfolk's history that such an order has been given to a business for selling illegal vapes.

Trading Standards and police officers paid four visits to the shop over seven months, seizing thousands of items including illegal vapes, tobacco, cigarettes, NOS (Nitrous Oxide Substance) canisters, THC rolls and very strong alcohol, while it did not hold a licence to sell any alcohol at all. Police told the court vapes had been sold to children as young as 11.

Dereham Times: George Freeman, MP for Mid-NorfolkGeorge Freeman, MP for Mid-Norfolk (Image: UK Parliament)

Mr Freeman said: “The Green Shop has been on the police watch list: and I congratulate Norfolk Police and Trading Standards on getting this closure order.

“Dereham Town Centre, High Street and Marketplace is a historic shopping hub which needs high-quality shops not this sort of illegal trading and drug trade which drags the town down.”

Speaking to people in the town centre last week, many slammed the shop, with one person calling it "irredeemable".

Dereham Times: The Green Shop on Norwich Street in DerehamThe Green Shop on Norwich Street in Dereham (Image: Denise Bradley)

Mr King, added: “It is reassuring that the police along with other authorities have been able to stop this illegal activity. It is utterly reprehensible that some people are prepared to exploit particular vulnerabilities and put children’s welfare at risk in the pursuit of profit.

“I think I speak for the vast majority of people in Dereham when I say that the welfare of our young people is very important to us; traders who put the welfare of young people at risk should feel the full force of the law come to bear on them.”

Dereham Times: Mayor for Dereham, Hugh KingMayor for Dereham, Hugh King (Image: Royal British Legion)