Q&A with Nigel Holmes: 'As mayor in a hat I would swank around'

Nigel Holmes, from Mundesley, wearing a teapot hat. 

Nigel Holmes, from Mundesley, wearing a teapot hat. - Credit: Supplied by Nigel Holmes

We're asking people in North Norfolk about their life and love for the area in a series of new Q&As. 

This week we're featuring Mundesley writer and scriptwriter Nigel Holmes, who gave his age as "really old".

1. How would you best describe your job or role in the community? 

As a certified 'old bloke' I no longer have a 'proper job'. Until Covid I was writing pantomime scripts for amateur and professional theatres all over the world. 

During lockdown I created a local history book about Mundesley and recently invented a group of colourful puppet characters who perform on a social media channel. 

For years I have loved to get involved in community entertainment projects and have often been seen on stage at many local events as “that idiot up there with the microphone”.

Nigel Holmes created the 'Fluffets' puppets with his wife Brenda. 

Nigel Holmes created the 'Fluffets' puppets with his wife Brenda. - Credit: Supplied by Nigel Holmes

2. How long have you lived in Mundesley?

Most Read

My wife and I moved to Mundesley over 37 years ago, making the trek into the unknown from Bishop’s Stortford in Hertfordshire.

My freelance status gave me the choice of working anywhere. The beautiful Norfolk coastline was what drew us here, although the cold north-easterlies were a bit of a winter surprise.

Mundesley Sign is inspired by the village's seafaring heritage (photo: Leigh Caudwell)

Nigel Holmes and his wife moved to the village of Mundesley 37 years ago.   - Credit: Archant

3. What would you do if you were mayor for a day?

Wear one of those fancy mayor-styled hats, with lots of gold braid and scrambled egg. As the mayor in a hat I would obviously swank around quite a lot.

4. What is your favourite landmark in north Norfolk?

I guess it has to be Happisburgh Lighthouse. Tall, upright and glows in the dark. You may notice that two of those attributes also refer to me.

Happisburgh Lighthouse is painted in the traditional red and white colours.Picture: Nick Butcher

Happisburgh's famous lighthouse is a favourite landmark. - Credit: Nick Butcher

5. What is your favourite pub?

Not really a pub type of guy. More likely to be found posing with a glass of white wine (with my little finger poking out) in some classy hotel, darling.

6. Which shops do you rely on?

We have been shopping in Mundesley’s brilliant establishments ever since we moved here. Country Pickings for vegetables. Mundesley Butchers for the best meat around.

7. What is your favourite place to go and eat?

As a married man I have to say – home! My wife’s cooking is the best (and I should earn a couple of brownie points there).

However, lunchtimes you will often find us in a variety of eating places around North Norfolk, having fun with a group of friends.

8. What is a perfect day in north Norfolk for you?

As a bit of a moocher it is just lovely to drift about on the beach and dabble a few toes in the North Sea. 

Mundesley beach (photo: Steve Adams)

Nigel Holmes said he likes to dip his toes in the North Sea.  - Credit: Archant

Even though I am officially retired, I still write scripts for the theatre and fiddle about with those silly puppets on social media. So the beach is the perfect place to unwind when things get hectic.

9. Which places in north Norfolk would you recommend to visitors?

A small shelter at the far end of the seafront green in Mundesley. 

You can 'people watch' all day. The antics of the holiday-makers can be very entertaining. A group of us older residents have that shelter permanently booked from 9am ’til 11am each day, so hands off.

10. Who is your north Norfolk hero?

Am I allowed to choose more than one? If so, then I would plump for all those brave, yet foolhardy people, who risk their lives in the local lifeboats. The volunteer crews of the small coastal villages, plus the national RNLI.

11. What do you most love about north Norfolk?

Being able to say “hello” to passers-by and getting a smile in return. 

This is a village thing and happens even if they have no idea if they have ever met you before. 

You sometimes find yourself having a drawn out conversation with a local person and say goodbye as if you are long lost friends, yet never expect to see them again.

*If you would like to take part or nominate someone you know for a Q&A, email stuart.anderson@archant.co.uk