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Felixstowe: Community fund to be used to save resort’s seafront attractions

09:27 27 November 2012

Part of the seafront gardens which will continue to be planted thanks to Felixstowee Town Council

Part of the seafront gardens which will continue to be planted thanks to Felixstowee Town Council's new community fund project.

Archant

A NEW “community fund” is today set to be used for the first time to save two of Felixstowe’s under-threat traditional seaside attractions.

In the past two years, town councillors have increased the council tax precept to bring in £69,000 so they could be ready to respond when treasured and vital services were put at risk by other authority’s cost-cutting.

Now their forward-thinking has paid off and they are in the perfect position to take over two of the resort’s best-loved attractions – the floral displays along the seafront and the decorative lighting on the prom.

Suffolk Coastal has decided to withdraw funding for the planting, and is expected soon to axe the cash for the coloured lights, both popular features for daytrippers and holidaymakers.

Town councillors are being recommended to use some of the cash to pay for bedding plants each year from 2013, and for the lighting when funding is eventually withdrawn. A final decision will be made on December 5.

Councillor Chris Slemmings said negotiations between the town council and Suffolk Coastal Services had been positive and “really quite encouraging” to help reach agreement over costs and a future planting regime.

The town council will pay more than £10,000 a year towards the gardens – mainly those alongside the prom and planters at the Town Hall.

It was decided not to pay for the leisure centre bed as this area is set for major changes or the Spa Pavilion approach road gardens, as these ought to be part of the lottery-backed scheme, or the chalet area as these gardens were marked as private.

Councillor Andy Smith said it was important for the town to look attractive for visitors and residents.

He said the funding for the lights had not been withdrawn yet but was growing likely and this would cost the council up to £14,600 a year. There would be the opportunity to consider savings in future including whether to reduce the hours they are on.

Councillor Doreen Savage said: “Without the decorative lighting, Felixstowe would not look anything like as attractive – it is a key area of our presentation of Felixstowe as a resort.”

4 comments

  • Oh for goodness sake, the lights are a complete and utter waste of money our councillors must live in cloud cuckoo land. Day trippers come during the DAY and in SUMMER thus they don’t see them switched on. And I wonder what the cost per holidaymakerday tripper is over the winter months as I see very few people walking along the prom after dark in November. As for the planting of the flower beds I just hope that they also withdraw the cash from Aldebrough, Southwold etc or is it that they just don’t care about Felixstowe tourist industry.

    Report this comment

    A Smith

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • Sorry Paul I don’t believe I am utterly wrong in my comment, your daughter or anyone local does not need decorative lighting they just need normal street lighting to provide a safe environment to walk in. I Object to the terms that the decorative lighting ‘is a key area of our presentation of Felixstowe as a resort.’. It is not Blackpool illuminations and the number of people appreciating these lights as a decorative item at any time is very limited.

    Report this comment

    A Smith

    Wednesday, November 28, 2012

  • I have lived in Felixstowe for over 30 years. I seem to remember that when we first lived here the lights on the prom were not turned on all through the year as they are now. Am I correct? It seems to me that it is unnecessary to have them on all the time as they are now. As for Suffolk Coastal withdrawing funding - This just confirms the feeling of many of us that as far as the rest of Suffolk is concerned it would be good if Felixstowe just dropped into the sea and was forgotten.

    Report this comment

    happypam

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

  • A Smith is utterly wrong in his comment. My teenage daughter often walks back from town along the prom and the decorative lighting is VITAL for her safety and of others who use the prom in the dark. Remember it is dark at 4pm in the winter. Moreover once the Fludyers is restored and the new pier built, the prom is likely to be a popular walkway at night. That aside, once again we see the utter contempt that SCDC continually demonstrates towards Felixstowe. No blue flag, no Spa Pavilion....Where will it end - SCDC is very happy to collect its big slug of council tax from the town but not to use those funds on the most basic services a seaside resort needs.

    Report this comment

    paul

    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

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