Felixstowe: Historic building firm Drake and Plant shuts doors

FELIXSTOWE: One of the town’s most established building contractors has closed down – after 86 years of trading.

Drake and Plant, based on the corner of Bridge Road and Garrison Lane in Felixstowe, has been a constant fixture in the town since 1925.

But in a huge blow for the resort’s economic fortunes, it was recently announced that the historic company would close, leaving employees out of work and affecting its subcontractors.

Representatives from Drake and Plant confirmed they had ceased trading but refused to comment further.

A builder working for another firm in town said: “They’re a good old firm – they’ve been here for a lot of years – and everyone knows them round here.”

The man, who asked not to be named, said builders had noticed a drop-off in the amount of work available and added: “If the work’s not there, what can you do? If people aren’t building anything then it’s tough to keep going. My company is a lot smaller so I haven’t got the same kind of overheads but it’s hard to keep a bigger company going at the moment.”

Drake and Plant are responsible for some of the most iconic work in Felixstowe, including the makeover of the Town Hall in Undercliff Road West two years ago, and the building of the flood memorial in Langer Road.

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A workman who is based near the Drake and Plant premises reported seeing around 20 employees and subcontractors outside the company premises on Friday when the announcement was made, although the exact number of workers affected is not clear.

n Have you or someone you know been affected by the company’s closure? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@evening star.co.uk