Ipswich is in the stink

MYSTERY today surrounds the source of an unknown stink that has recently pervaded Ipswich town centre. The smell, described as a damp and dank odour, was thought to be linked to the town's drainage system but council bosses and sewerage chiefs are at a loss to the exact cause.

MYSTERY today surrounds the source of an unknown stink that has recently pervaded Ipswich town centre.

The smell, described as a damp and dank odour, was thought to be linked to the town's drainage system but council bosses and sewerage chiefs are at a loss to the exact cause.

Alex James, a 24-year-old visiting the town, said he noticed the stench as he took a taxi into the town centre.

He said: "I think I noticed a smell on Sunday when I arrived in the town. It is a dank smell rather than anything else, it is not very nice really.

"It could be the drains, it smells like stale water."

Anglian Water spokesman Gareth Rondall said the company was not aware of any problems with the town's drains or treatment works at Cliff Quay.

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He said: "We rely on customers to let us know about smells and leaks. We will be investigating the reports of the smell by doing a check in the town centre."

Mr Rondall said the smell could be due to gases from nearby marshland or ditches.

He added: "Smells like this could be from stagnant water in road gullies or sewerage works. It s very difficult to say exactly where the smell is coming from.

"We have no reports of any problems at the moment."

A spokesman for Ipswich Borough Council said: "We have had no complaints and no reports of a smell but we are aware that the current weather conditions can exacerbate the spreading of smells. Air is not moving around very much."

Have you noticed a smell? Does your street stink? What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

This latest pong isn't the first time Suffolk has been described as less than fragrant.

The county has been plagued by bad smells for years - most famously the Woolpit Whiff and the Nacton Niff .

Villagers in Tostock, Drinkstone and Beyton have complained of the stench from a nearby pig farm and swill production plant for more than 20 years - and have even named the stink the Woolpit Whiff.

Farmer John Clarke has faced numerous court actions because of the smell from his production plant and fed-up residents also tried to convince the local council to reduce their council tax bills.

In 1999, Mr Clarke was forced to spend £100,000 on improving the plant to try and reduce the smell after a High Court hearing in Norwich.

He is currently the subject on another action at the High Court in London.

Mid Suffolk District Council is seeking an injunction, claiming Mr Clarke has been using the plant for industrial purposes when he only has permission for agricultural use.

Nicknamed the Nacton Niff, stinky sewage from a plant in Raeburn Road, Ipswich, has caused upset for more than ten years.

The niff has upset residents so much they have continually complained to Ipswich Borough Council.

As a result, Anglian Water was served with an abatement notice in December last year. But an appeal was immediately lodged, which meant the order was postponed.

In Felixstowe, complaints about a niff pervading through Nacton, Levington and Orford Roads have been ongoing for around seven years.

Blamed on sewage works, the grim aroma gets particularly bad during hot summer weather.

The sewage plant on Walton Avenue has been the subject of investigations and work to try and get rid of the stink, which is said to be the result of modernisation to sewers to stop waste being pumped into the sea.

In 2001, Anglian Water pledged to complete improvements to the sewage plant but the problem is still being complained about.

And of course the nasty smell of sugarbeet which used to waft across Ipswich can never be forgotten by some.

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