Listed attempts for Trimley station

EFFORTS are to be made to have a Suffolk station "listed" for its architectural and historical importance because of fears that it is about to be demolished.

By Richard Cornwell

EFFORTS are to be made to have a Suffolk station "listed" for its architectural and historical importance because of fears that it is about to be demolished.

Rumours are flying round Trimley St Mary that the dilapidated buildings could be bulldozed any day – and villagers say that would be a great shame.

The station buildings have not been used for many years and are in a poor state of repair, though they have been identified for development.

A number of plans have been put forward over the years – permission was granted for a restaurant and wine bar, and offices would be acceptable – but parish councillors say not enough effort has been made to market it.

It is estimated demolition could cost up to £20,000, while renovation would probably need an injection of around £70,000.

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Councillors Mary Dixon and Brian Frost said the reports of the proposed demolition had come from people working for the railway operators.

"I have been unable to get the information confirmed from Network Rail and have been told I will receive a letter soon with the full details," said Mrs Dixon.

"It would be a great shame if the station buildings were lost. They are interesting buildings and an important part of Trimley.

"I am still pursuing the matter to see what can be done. It may be that we could get the building listed, though we would need to show it had sufficient historical interest or that it was designed by an architect with a distinctive design."

Councillor Brian Frost said: "It is a building of some character and I would hate to see someone suddenly move in over a weekend and bulldoze it.

"We would be left with a rubbish dump or worse, and the passengers on the platform would be left very exposed.

"I would think that with the port nearby and the demands for office space, that if this property was advertised and marketed properly, someone would take it up."

The council agreed to explore the possibility of listing and to contact the Department of Culture, Media and Sport to make an application.

The station was built in 1891, just 14 years after the Ipswich-Felixstowe line was built, and was manned for many years. Today it still has an hourly service.

When Railtrack took over ownership of the old buildings five years ago, it promised to give them a new lease of life. It signed a deal to let the station to a commercial enterprise and an investment programme was drawn up to renovate the property for the new tenant, but nothing happened.

No-one was available to comment from Network Rail.

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