Package of ideas to boost Woodbridge

A PACKAGE of promotional ideas is to be launched in a bid to attract visitors to one of Suffolk's most picturesque towns.Woodbridge enjoys an idyllic location on the River Alde but many shopkeepers complained of a quiet winter and fear that the new Martlesham park and ride has caused a decline in trade.

A PACKAGE of promotional ideas is to be launched in a bid to attract visitors to one of Suffolk's most picturesque towns.

Woodbridge enjoys an idyllic location on the River Alde but many shopkeepers complained of a quiet winter and fear that the new Martlesham park and ride has caused a decline in trade.

Now, town centre co-ordinator Marion Wells is in the process of putting together a campaign to encourage people from all over the Suffolk coastal area to take a trip to the town this year.

She said: "I am in the process of designing a series of A5 leaflets which will promote the benefits of the town to visitors from a much wider area.

"They will encourage people to 'choose Woodbridge' and will be distributed at tourist information points across the Suffolk coastal district."

The leaflets have come about through a number of discussions with tourism officials at the district council.

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Dr Wells also met with staff at Sutton Hoo this week to discuss a direct link-up between the popular tourist attraction and the town.

She said: "When you go to Sutton Hoo you can see across the river to Woodbridge so it makes sense to encourage visitors from there in to the town and vice-versa."

Other ideas being discussed include working with Anglia Railways to come up with ways of encouraging visitors in to the town by train.

Dr Wells was appointed in July in a bid to help promote the town. She has already organised a number of successful themed months and hopes to line up a number of events in the town over the coming year.

However, she stresses this is not because trade in Woodbridge is declining in anyway: "Although shopkeepers reported a quiet time just before Christmas, the majority of them say things picked up eventually.

"It's quite clear that Woodbridge hasn't been abandoned. You only have to look at the queues in the shops and the number of cars in the car parks to see that."

N What do you think Woodbridge and other smaller Suffolk towns can do to continue to thrive? Write in with your ideas to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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