After nearly five years new Ipswich signs go up – nearly a fortnight early

From left: David Ellesmere, Ipswich Mayor Sarah Barber and Paul West at the sign at Bourne Bridge. P

From left: David Ellesmere, Ipswich Mayor Sarah Barber and Paul West at the sign at Bourne Bridge. Picture: PAUL GEATER - Credit: Archant

Ipswich has finally got new, modern, signs on the main entrances to the town after nearly five years of battling with bureaucracy.

We led the calls for new signs in the wake of the 2012 Olympics and the spotlight that was shone on the country for its tourism potential.

The six new signs that are now going up have cost £6,000 – funded equally between the borough and county councils.

But the decision had to go right up to officials at the Department for Transport who needed to approve the designs which show six Ipswich landmarks.

The signs have been installed at Bury Road, London Road, Wherstead Road, Nacton Road, Felixstowe Road and Woodbridge Road East.

Eventually more signs are expected to be installed at other entrances to the town – the cost is relatively modest even though the bureaucracy has been something of a nightmare for officials from the councils.

Ironically, after nearly five years of waiting the signs actually went up two weeks early. They had been due to be installed on Suffolk Day – June 21 – but officials at Suffolk Highways decided they were so good that they put them up at the weekend.

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Ipswich Council leader David Ellesmere joined mayor Sarah Barber and Suffolk Cabinet member for Ipswich Paul West to see the new sign at Bourne Bridge on Wherstead Road – which shows the University of Suffolk’s Waterfront building.

Mr Ellesmere said: “There’s been an almost unbelievable amount of bureaucracy associated with these signs. It’s great to see them and they do look good – but why did it take so long?

“It’s really ironic that after all this time they eventually got put up a couple of weeks early!”

Mr West added: “It has been a long time coming but I am very pleased to see they are finally up at the entrances to the town – they should create a very good impression to people arriving in Ipswich.

And Mrs Barber was pleased that the designs – which are different at each entrance to the town – are modern and reflect the town’s history and look forward to the future.

Looking at the Bourne Bridge sign showing the university building, she said: “It is a very modern, impressive design that really shows that the town is developing.”