Cromer 'in lockdown' after travellers descend on car park and teen raped

Extra police were drafted in to deal with the chaos in Cromer, Norfolk, where several venues shut up shop early due to "local events” last night.
Cromer Pier’s popular theatre bar closed early on the advice of police.
Norfolk Police said extra officers were on patrol "following reports of low-level disorder" but stressed that accounts of a stabbing were unfounded.
Officers are also investigating an alleged rape at a bus stop in the town where a woman said she was attacked by two men on Friday night.
Cromer was reported to be in lockdown after a series of violent incidents
There is a feeling of unease within the town and anger that at the end of our busiest week of the year this has happened
Laurie Scott
Residents said a group of people had been fighting in the town, which they described as "in lockdown".
Jeremy Garner from Cromer social club told the Eastern Daily Press: “We did have an incident where we had to call the police. There was a large group of people that piled into the pub, no-one was hurt and luckily nothing was broken.”
Nearby in East Runton, a holidaymaker said up to 20 police cars arrived after the landlord at a campsite bar refused to serve some people.
Chris Perry said: "It was clear there was a commotion going on in the clubhouse and a group of people arrived at that bar.
"The licensee had decided they weren't going to serve them and the shutters went down at the bar and the police in huge numbers turned up - up to 20 vehicles here last night with dog units."
Venues including the pier's Theatre Bar were forced to close early in Cromer
Holidaymakers and locals were dismayed by the violence and the disruption it caused.
Eyewitness Thain Flett described the scene as being “like a zombie apocalypse”.
Denise Dixon said: “Last night pubs were trashed. Cromer, Sheringham, Runton and Overstrand would not go on lock down for no reason, particularly as it’s the busiest week of the year. 
“First time ever I’ve felt unsafe in our beautiful sun spot!”
Maysie Man said: “In all the years I have been Cromer, I have never felt intimated but the atmosphere in town tonight was eerie. 
“Where were the police? What are we paying our council tax for? Is the Norfolk Police Commissioner going to make a statement about how 100 thugs have closed down the North Norfolk economy?”
Michelle Howell said: “How do they rate it as low level when all the locals are being told to stay in and lock the doors and all the shops and pubs have closed?”
Violence erupted on the last day of Cromer's annual Carnival Week
Some locals on Twitter have linked the disorder to the arrival of travellers in the area, although this has not been confirmed by police.
North Norfolk District Council said a group of travellers in 23 caravans had set up camp in the town's Runton Road car park.
A spokeswoman said they arrived on Friday and the council had served a notice on Saturday for them to leave.
In a statement, the local authority said: "We are working closely with the police to reassure the community, businesses and visitors to our seaside resorts.
"The council will always act swiftly where there are illegal encampments.
"We have served notice on the travellers to leave and we will seek support from the magistrates on Monday in order to enforce that notice if the travellers do not leave the car park later today."
Police sent extra patrols to Cromer after reports of violence
Norfolk Police Superintendent Malcolm Cooke said: “We are experienced in policing high season demand, normally seen in the county at this time of year. 
“There will always be incidents where the police can engage with the local community and visitors to ensure a safe environment for all.
"Yesterday, police identified a slight increase of low-level anti-social behaviour and reports of crimes in the area so have pro-actively adjusted our resourcing levels in order to deal with this.
“We will continue to have a police presence in the area today to provide reassurance to local residents, businesses and holiday makers.
“Local businesses were made aware of a small number of incidents dealt with by officers but no official police direction was given that businesses should close. Any decisions to close would be down to local businesses.
“We acknowledge there have been a number of incidents in Cromer over the weekend which will understandably cause concern. However, I can assure residents these incidents have been dealt with appropriately and are of a nature routinely dealt with in towns such as Cromer on a busy August weekend.
“Should you have any ongoing concerns about incidents you’ve experienced, please contact us on 101.”
Holidaymakers and locals were dismayed by the violence in Cromer
The town has been hosting its annual carnival week, which finished on Friday, and draws in about 250,000 people to north Norfolk.
The chairman of the carnival committee, Tony Shipp, said: "It's been a fantastic carnival week but this has taken the shine off things."
A cafe owner from the resort said businesses had taken a "huge hit" on what should have been their busiest weekend of the year.
Laurie Scott said: "There was a large group of people in town, causing some commotion and being very intimidating concerning businesses, so much so that all of the pubs in Cromer - maybe six, seven, eight pubs - were closed at 7pm to guarantee the safety of their customers and staff.
"The streets of Cromer are fairly empty this morning.
"There is a feeling of unease within the town and anger that at the end of our busiest week of the year this has happened."
Cromer Pier is open for business as usual today
Cromer Pier said it was open as normal today and looking to make the most of a lovely summer's day.
General Manager Francis Guildea said the pier shut its bar to outsiders last night but the famous end of the pier show went ahead as normal.
He said staff were on alert but the pier was a family venue and staff were not expecting any trouble.
The Red Lion Hotel said it was also open as usual. 
The manager said they closed early last night after police encouraged a large crowd of drinkers to leave, but there was no trouble. 
Staff at the tourist office praised police for their swift response and said they felt comforted by the extra officers patrolling the streets.
Cromer 'in lockdown' after travellers descend on car park and teen raped Cromer 'in lockdown' after travellers descend on car park and teen raped Reviewed by Alexander Von Stern on 09:43:00 Rating: 5