New move to preserve resort's splendour

HERITAGE bosses are today backing moves to give special protection to Felixstowe's seafront area because of its “distinctive character”.

HERITAGE bosses are today backing moves to give special protection to Felixstowe's seafront area because of its “distinctive character”.

Proposals have been put forward to create a new “conservation area” that would ensure Edwardian and Victorian buildings - among the resort's oldest - would be preserved, restored and kept for the future.

The area under consideration includes the pier, which is in need of considerable refurbishment, a Martello Tower, promenade and seafront gardens.

It also includes many of the streets between Sea Road and Langer Road built on an urban grid network as part of a plan by port founder Colonel George Tomline.

The vision was to create a “new town” and resort connected to the dock with a rail link to Beach Station, now sadly demolished.

Many of the houses still have traditional bay windows, verandas, balconies, and decorative cast iron and timber work characteristic of Victorian and Edwardian seaside towns.

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Suffolk Coastal cabinet member Andy Smith said conservation area status would protect the buildings, ensuring none could be demolished or altered without planning permission, allowing council officers to work with owners to ensure properties are refurbished and preserved.

There had been a positive response to the idea from the public with the majority of those who took part in consultation backing the initiative.

“Felixstowe South has been identified by English Heritage as worthy of designation of a conservation area by virtue of its distinctive character,” said Mr Smith.

“Designation would extend protection to the remaining Late Victorian and Edwardian architecture, which is characteristic of the town of Felixstowe, and provide the opportunity for future investment in the area to enhance its character and appearance for the benefit of residents and visitors.”

Is Felixstowe's seafront area worth preserving? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk