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Pancake race flop

PUBLISHED: 11:40 05 February 2008 | UPDATED: 14:26 07 July 2010

Robyn Greenacre

Dereham's annual Pancake Day race has been cancelled after a mix-up over road closures.

The highly anticipated event, organised by Phoenix Hotel, sees teams from around the town race up and down Church Street tossing pancakes in a bid to be crowned champions.

Dereham's annual Pancake Day race has been cancelled after a mix-up over road closures.

The highly anticipated event, organised by Phoenix Hotel, sees teams from around the town race up and down Church Street tossing pancakes in a bid to be crowned champions.

But today eager participants and bystanders were left disappointed after the race had to be cancelled because of confusion over road closures.

Phoenix manager Wayne Robinson had received permission from both Norfolk County Council and Norfolk Police to temporarily close the road for the fun to start.

Yet when the start time for the race arrived and no-one had turned up to close the road Mr Robinson contacted both the council and police to ask what to do.

He said: “The county council told me to go ahead and close the road briefly as I had permission. When I checked with the police we were told if we closed the road we would be arrested.

“I phoned yesterday to double check it could still all go-ahead and after more than two hours I was told by all parties it could go-ahead.

“It's very depressing. It's meant to be a fun event and we've got stacks of pancakes ready to go.”

A spokesman for Norfolk County Council said: “Norfolk County Council is keen to encourage the hosting of community events, wherever possible.

“If permission is granted, organisers must take responsibility for providing their own barriers and signage.

“We were happy to grant permission so a pancake race could be held in Dereham. We very much hope the re-arranged race will be a big success and are available to offer further guidance, should that prove necessary.”

The pancake race has been provisionally rescheduled to take place next Tuesday.

Inspector Julie Wvendth of Dereham Police said: “We're very sorry this has happened. We are very supportive of events like this one.

“It was a communication error. For some reason the information didn't get filtered down to us.”

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