Coastline saved from the sea

A BEAUTIFUL stretch of the Suffolk coastline will be protected from the ravages of the sea for up to 50 years after a pioneering scheme was agreed.The plan scheme to fund coastal defences was approved by Suffolk Coastal District Council and now farmland will be sold for new homes with the proceeds of the land sales funding the £2million-plus required to improve coastal defences at East Lane, Bawdsey.

A BEAUTIFUL stretch of the Suffolk coastline will be protected from the ravages of the sea for up to 50 years after a pioneering scheme was agreed.

The plan scheme to fund coastal defences was approved by Suffolk Coastal District Council and now farmland will be sold for new homes with the proceeds of the land sales funding the £2million-plus required to improve coastal defences at East Lane, Bawdsey.

As a result, a historic Martello Tower and isolated properties, farmland and villages near Woodbridge will be safeguarded against the ravages of the North Sea.

John Fell-Clark, owner of the Martello Tower, said he was thrilled with the council's commitment to coastal protection.

“I am absolutely delighted with the result. It is the very best we could have hoped for,” said Mr Fell-Clark.

The district council's development control committee agreed the principle of allowing homes to be built outside the boundary of Bawdsey, Alderton and Hollesley.

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Now the council has to decide exactly where and how many homes can be built against its own planning policies.

Councillors indicated they favour sites in East Lane, Bawdsey, and Hollesley Road, Alderton, but they think land in Bushey Lane, Hollesley, is unsuitable.

Buyers for the land, donated by farmers, will have to be secured while the council needs to fine-tune the design of the coastal defences and find a contractor. It is anticipated the defences will be constructed in 2008.

The scheme involves three landowners giving land, at no profit to themselves, to the East Lane Trust.

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