New floodgates for Ipswich dock

VITAL work to replace floodgates protecting Ipswich will get under way next month, it was confirmed today.The town's dock and Waterfront area is currently protected by two huge gates sited where the New Cut meets the West Bank Terminal.

VITAL work to replace floodgates protecting Ipswich will get under way next month, it was confirmed today.

The town's dock and Waterfront area is currently protected by two huge gates sited where the New Cut meets the West Bank Terminal.

However these key structures are coming to the end of their life and engineers are due to begin work to replace them late next month to ensure the town remains protected.

The £1.25million project will see the existing flood gates replaced by two new large ones, measuring nine metres by 11 metres and weighing in at a massive 45 tonnes each.

Work will take place in two stages but is not connected to ongoing plans for a new £71million flood barrier that is needed to replace the current system.

Andrew Usborne, Environment Agency project manager, said the existing gates will be removed for a short period to allow work to take place to ensure the new gates can be fitted smoothly come October.

Most Read

He said: “We are replacing like with like. They need to be replaced as they are reaching the end of their life.

“We will take out the old gates and do a survey of them and the dock itself and will spend a few weeks building anchorage to hold the new gates in place. The new gates will be put in place in October.”

As revealed in the Star last month, it is hoped that funding can be secured to pay for a £71million flood defence system that will supersede existing measures.

A report on the issue stated that in as few as eight years the lowest areas of the Waterfront will be considered “unsafe” if new, more robust defences are not in place.

The initial cost of constructing a barrier would approach the £35million mark, with the project forecasted to cost in excess of £70million over a 100-year period.

Funding for the project is currently being sought.