High tides wreak havoc on seafront

ENGINEERS will today visit Felixstowe seafront to assess the damage after high tides wreaked havoc.Beach huts in Sea Road were ripped from their footings and jumbled together, a new sets of steps over the rocks to the shore were smashed and swept away, and several sections of promenade were lifted and broken by the waves.

By Richard Cornwell

ENGINEERS will today visit Felixstowe seafront to assess the damage after high tides wreaked havoc.

Beach huts in Sea Road were ripped from their footings and jumbled together, a new sets of steps over the rocks to the shore were smashed and swept away, and several sections of promenade were lifted and broken by the waves.

The most disturbing sight though was another crack appearing in the surface of the prom - the 30-yard two-inch gap being very similar to the one which began the collapse of part of the walkway last summer.

If the winds had been gale-force north and easterly the damage could have been much worse.

Weathermen were today warning people across Suffolk to brace themselves for more severe weather with snow showers expected and the weather set to stay cold for the rest of the week.

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Met officers said day-time temperatures were likely to hover around 4C though it will feel colder with the windchill, and at night it will be -1C. Coastal areas are most likely to see a covering of snow.

Suffolk Coastal officers will assess the damage to Felixstowe prom. At least seven of its six feet by eight feet slabs, each six inches deep, were lifted and smashed by the sea.

Although 3,800 tons of rock were placed along 350 metres of shore in Sea Road a few months ago, councillors have warned this is only a “sticking plaster” and may not last through the winter storms and permanent works are needed.

Police and Coastguards were called late yesterday afternoon as high tide struck.

Felixstowe coastguard Jo Arlow said: “This was not a storm, just spring tides. There was a very heavy swell running along there and the waves were smashing over the promenade.

“I was not surprised to see one of the flights of steps over the rocks go - I had been wondering how long they would survive.”

Resident Bruce Harrison said: “It makes you worried what will happen if there is a real storm.

“Every day now we are seeing the sea come up and hit the edge of the prom. But this is the worst damage we have had for a couple of months.”

Are you worried about flooding this winter? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

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