Winter all year round
Communities Secretary, Hazel Blears, finally approved in November the application to build SnOasis at Great Blakenham. Opponents who have fought the scheme for six years will have been dismayed but probably not surprised. Creating Europe's largest indoor ski slope, other winter sports facilities, ski lodges, a hotel and housing will provide over 3000 construction jobs, it is said. It is due to open in 2012, but how much will be built and when?
News in the last Newsletter of the Listing of the walls has interested members, including Mr Leonard Woolf who has contributed more information. There are 14 such burial grounds of the period outside London, mostly and significantly in coastal and port towns. Similar Listing of the enclosing walls has been done at Kings Lynn and Exeter.
Church towers confused
IBC conservation officers were asked by Sotheby's to identify two towers in an English School 18th century landscape painting recently up for sale. St Mary le Tower then had no spire and St Lawrence was taller. Sotheby's apparently couldn't believe that and ignoring Ipswich information reversed the names so that St Mary's had a "stately 176 ft bell tower".
Mention of St Lawrence is a reminder that St Lawrence Street has thankfully remained graffiti free since the big clean up - pleasing to all pedestrians, and to our Society which helped to organise and pay for the re-paving and seating in 1999.
Keeping water out - but not everywhere?
A public exhibition was held on 5 December outlining the proposed construction of a tidal surge barrier in the New Cut, to be built in 2011 and 2012. This will "reduce flood risk to Ipswich," as the Environment Agency says. But residents in the Wherstead Road area below the barrier are less happy. New higher lock gates to the Wet Dock were installed on 7 Dec.
Comfort more important than dinner
Angry reaction to the proposed withdrawal of dining car facilities on the Norwich-Ipswich-London rail route may be missing the main point - the possible demise of our InterCity rolling stock and replacement by commuter-type carriages which, even if more modern than Great Eastern's were, are hardly a worthy substitute.
IBC holds Area Forums every two months or so. Residents of the 3 or 4 wards represented in each forum have a chance to air problems with councillors and council officers. Many different subjects have been presented and discussed, including energy efficiency, Greenways, real nappies as opposed to disposables, and the unpleasant droning/whining noise caused by a vacuum pump unloading cement at Cliff Quay. Worth a look in your area.
IBC has received contractors' tenders for building the four big turbines noted in our last Newsletter. More information about this admirable scheme should be available from the Council soon. (Not such good news about the little turbine in Christchurch Arboretum!)