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Methodist Church, Overstrand
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Overstrand is a large coastal village just to the east of the jolly town of Cromer, and might even be described as a kind of suburb, although of the very best kind. There is something very English about Overstrand, the pub and the houses and the churches, which may be a result of the families carrying buckets and spades and lilos down to the beach, but may also be because, more than any other north Norfolk village, Overstrand bears the hallmark of the great Clement Scott. Scott was a journalist who, in search of a story, came to Overstrand in the 1880s, and fell in love with it. He spent the next twenty years writing about it in the pages of the Daily Telegraph. He christened this coast 'Poppyland', and Poppyland became a favoured resort of several generations of English holidaymakers searching for a rural idyll in the years before and after the First World War. Overstrand in particular became so fashionable that many well-off Londoners, particularly from the theatrical and literary worlds, built houses here, and grand hotels remain to this day, although the grandest of them went over the cliffs in the 1950s.
Simon Knott, June 2009
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