Get ready to party - and park and ride

PARK and ride and help ease the traffic chaos – that's the message today to the thousands expected to flock to Felixstowe's golden jubilee celebrations.

By Richard Cornwell

PARK and ride and help ease the traffic chaos – that's the message today to the thousands expected to flock to Felixstowe's golden jubilee celebrations.

Organisers have provided a number of park and ride sites around the town, plus extra car parking to cater for the huge numbers who will be visiting the seaside to enjoy the BBC Music Live event.

In all, there will be around 5,000 parking places provided for the 30,000-plus who are expected to gather on the seafront for the giant party to mark the Queen's 50 years on the throne.

The 11-hour £24,000 extravaganza kicks off at midday on Monday June 3 and will feature dozens of live bands playing a wide variety of music.

The seafront will be transformed into a "musical mile" with more than 60 bands playing on 16 stages – eight main ones and eight smaller ones – stretching from East Beach, Undercliff Road East, to the funfair in Sea Road.

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There will also be family entertainment – an air display, It's a Knock-out, karaoke marathon, fireworks, dancing and street entertainers – during the day, and people are being encouraged to bring a picnic and celebrate.

But it is the sheer number of people who are expected to attend the biggest event in Suffolk which is providing organisers with their biggest headache.

Negotiations with the police, landowners and Suffolk Coastal council have provided park-and-ride schemes which will operate from the Trimley Sports and Social Club, and three sites on the edge of Felixstowe port – Anzani House in Trinity Avenue, land in Parker Avenue, and sites in Walton Avenue.

Extra parking will also be provided in Langer Park in Langer Road, at Schlumberger in Carr Road, Wireless Green, and at other sites.

There will be full signposting from the A14 for "Jubilee car parks" and from junctions in the town.

All the town's public car parks will be open as usual – except for Convalescent Hill on the seafront.

"The message to people is if you can leave you car at home and travel by bus or train, that would be brilliant and great help," said event co-ordinator Les Arbon.

"But we know that will not be possible for everyone, and so if you are coming by car please use the park-and-ride schemes or the signposted car parks.

"It will be no good just heading to the seafront and thinking that you will park where you usually do because we are expecting enormous numbers of people and the seafront car parks will be full from very early on.

"If you live in Felixstowe, please don't even think about driving to the event – please leave the car at home and walk."

Undercliff Road West will be closed between its junction with Sea Road and the Spa Pavilion, with Convalescent, South and Bent Hills all closed.

There will be access only for residents with passes to South Hill and Bent Hill from Wolsey Gardens.

"There should be enough parking with the extra sites which are being provided, and Felixstowe is lucky in having quite a lot of on-street parking, as long as people are prepared to walk," added Mr Arbon.

n Teams are still needed for the fancy dress It's a Knock-out contest, which is to be filmed and shown live by BBC TV. Further information from Les Arbon on 07880 976 788.


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