Keep Trimley free of lorries call
"NO Entry" – that's the stark message today from villagers determined to keep their community free of lorries.People living in the twin Trimleys have fired the first warning shots in a battle they hope they can win before the fighting even starts.
By Richard Cornwell
"NO Entry" – that's the stark message today from villagers determined to keep their community free of lorries.
People living in the twin Trimleys have fired the first warning shots in a battle they hope they can win before the fighting even starts.
For the villagers, who live in the shadow of Britain's biggest port, have voiced fresh fears that attempts may be made to build a major new road through the heart of their community to reach Felixstowe's container terminals.
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The possibility of a new plan for a third access to the port has arisen because the time has come to review the planning policy for the peninsula.
But villagers say that under no circumstances will they allow a new route to the port's Trinity Terminal to come through the Trimleys.
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The port has given assurances in the past that it has no intention of building a new road across open countryside, but parish councillors say policy must be set in stone to stop this happening if there was a change of heart.
The review of the Local Plan, which is just beginning and will take some years to complete, will allow local landowners and companies to put forward a wide variety of schemes and requirements.
It has been feared in the past that the much-needed third access to the port could be created by building a new road from the roundabout in the centre of the Trimleys, over fields, skirting the nature reserve and into the port.
But Trimley councillors say this would wreck the area. It would make Trimley St Martin an island, and cause phenomenal noise pollution for residents who already suffer from the constant background sound of the A14's traffic.
Trimley St Mary Parish Council has sent a letter to Suffolk Coastal saying that any new access for the dock should be within the physical limits of Felixstowe or the port and not across open countryside.
Council chairman Hazel Blackshaw told the annual parish meeting that this must be part of the new Local Plan – as it was in the old one.
"No-one knows what could happen in the future and we think it is sensible that this policy is continued to protect the village and its countryside leading down to the river," she said.
While the port insists that it has no plans at this stage to apply to build a road, it does have a growing need for a third gate, especially with the growth of its trade and its plans to extend upriver to its current limits.
Suffolk Coastal council said: "The council recognises the need for a new access but, because of the high environmental value of the land which fringes Felixstowe, considers that any new access road should not be located within open countryside, especially the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
"The council is also concerned that a new road, in addition to considerably altering the character of the area, would increase pressure to open up new areas which would, in any event, be inappropriate for development."
See comment page 6.