Felixstowe's very own jungle

JUNGLES all over the world are being hacked back every day – but here's one most people wouldn't mind losing!Yes, it's Felixstowe's very own jungle, a deeply unattractive one, too, and an area which makes many residents feel ashamed.

JUNGLES all over the world are being hacked back every day – but here's one most people wouldn't mind losing!

Yes, it's Felixstowe's very own jungle, a deeply unattractive one, too, and an area which makes many residents feel ashamed.

Because this is the gateway to the resort and the sight which greets visitors immediately after they have seen the sign welcoming them to the town.

For three-quarters of a mile after you drive past that sign, both sides of Candlet Road – the main route into the town – are lined with chest-high dead grass, thistles, brambles and other assorted weeds.


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Then, abruptly, the weeds finish and you burst out of the jungle into an oasis of close-cropped lush grass any gardener would be proud to have as their lawn.

Now if this was Bournemouth, or any resort worth its salt, that mowed and cared-for grass would stretch all the way back to the welcome sign, with shrubs and flower beds, too, to give holidaymakers and daytrippers a proper greeting.

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They would then be delighted to have arrived in Felixstowe, still the region's top floral town, and looking forward to what it might have to offer – and residents could feel proud of their home.

It may never get that good, in fact it would be easier to move the sign to where the beautifully clipped grass starts.

But councillors are at long last looking at whether the cut grass area can be extended, possibly 400 yards back to where the road, the Walton by-pass, crosses over Gulpher Road.

This would still leave half-a-mile of overgrown verges from the dock spur roundabout, but at least would be a move in the right direction.

The highways advisory committee – a town-county council partnership – has asked Suffolk Coastal to carry out a full investigation into the cost.

The district council has already said it would be willing to extend the mowing, though it may need to plant some of the extensive area already mown with shrubs so that an enlarged mowing area would not be too enormous to deal with.

It will ask Felixstowe Town Council if it could contribute to the extra cost.

Councillors seem on the whole in favour, though some have absurdly suggested the overgrown verges are a "wildlife area".

If they carried out a closer inspection they would find the weeds infested with old beer cans, takeaway wrappers and other rubbish thrown from passing cars.

The full costs should be known in November and it is hoped the cutting can be extended next summer.

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