Plea to help homeless after body find

CALLS have today been made to provide more help for the homeless in Ipswich after a man's body was found in undergrowth in the town.Police believe the man, whose body had started to decompose and smell, had been sleeping rough in the bushes in Ranelagh Road.

CALLS have today been made to provide more help for the homeless in Ipswich after a man's body was found in undergrowth in the town.

Police believe the man, whose body had started to decompose and smell, had been sleeping rough in the bushes in Ranelagh Road.

He was discovered by officers at about 8am yesterday after a police patrol in the early hours noticed a smell. Police said they believed the man was homeless and had been in the bushes for some time.

His death is not being treated as suspicious and a post mortem is due to be carried out.

Now residents living nearby have warned homelessness is a problem in the area, while the leader of Ipswich Borough Council said she was determined to do more to tackle the issue.

Eunice Carlisle, who is currently living at the Chequers Hotel in Ancaster Road, said she believed she may have met the man, who has not yet been identified, after he lost his job and home several weeks ago.

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Ms Carlisle added: “It is horrid to think someone died there.

“There is a big problem with homelessness and people don't seem to want to know about it or deal with it.”

Clive Howe, 39, who lives near the scene where the man was found in Ranelagh Road, added: “You will get people living in their cars around here.

“There are some squatters as well. There are also lots of homeless people nearby on the river bank by Station Bridge.

“There seems to be quite a big problem so if people find a spot they will sleep there.”

Liz Harsant, leader of Ipswich Borough Council and a trustee of the Umbrella Trust, which is dedicated to tackling homelessness in Ipswich, said progress was being made towards helping people in the town, but more needed to be done.

“This is very sad,” she said. “Homelessness is such a complex issue. Sometimes we have to acknowledge that people are in that position through choice, but in 95 per cent or 98 pc of cases they don't want to be.

“There are things going on to improve the situation but we need to have the issue on the front of the agenda, not hidden as tends to happen.

“Our vision for the future is to be able to house some of these people and work to help them back to society.”

Does more need to be done to help homeless people in Ipswich? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.