COLUMN: Lyn of Littleport

Phil Malkin who runs Young People Littleport

Phil Malkin who runs Young People Littleport - Credit: Archant

Littleport is home to an auction house that’s unlike any I’ve ever been to.

Abstract art

Abstract art - Credit: Archant

Apart from the delicious smells of sausage sandwiches and other such basic culinary countryside delights wafting around the sale room of a Saturday morning, emanating from the busy kitchen, where else could you bid for a large, metal office papers storage cabinet, cabbages and bunches of carrots, guide price 50p each, and a Persian rug (genuine) in quick succession as you munch?

Auctioneer Phil Malkin, mover and shaker of Littleport’s YPL charity, and who runs the Bible Study Group at their premises in Granby Street, keeps up a witty repartee over the microphone you’d never hear the like of at Christie’s or Sotheby’s either. And following some gilt framed mirrors and soft furnishings of antique sort, after an equally antique sales pitch from Phil, who remarked that an old-fashioned piece of multi-use electrical DIY kit “would enable any man to fix things in the kitchen while doing the ironing” to much laughter, that got it quickly sold too. The three-weekly Bible Study Group meets this Sunday, July 16, at 2pm.

I should mention that he has a willing band of volunteers at the twice-weekly auctions, based at Henry Crabb Road, amongst whom is my friend and Timebank member Roger Bramford, who with his partner Lorraine, chose to settle here in Littleport when they came to England from South Africa.

Like many newcomers to the village, they have given much of their time, and effort, into supporting community activities and initiatives. Roger is also a Neighbourhood Watch organiser, practically contributing to making our village streets safer.

We’ve had a bit of a problem recently with what they call anti-social behaviour, but it’s just a few instances and it’s well under control now with the help of vigilant residents like Roger, and the police of course.

And the upside is all the youngsters who display social behaviours. As young dad, chemist Robert Smith says “the young people of Littleport are the most polite I’ve ever seen, compared to some of the places I’ve lived.”

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For instance, Stephanie Seekings said she was happy to sit and wait in the car on her way to the Co-op, while a group of young boys helped an elderly lady slowly cross Wisbech Road safely.