Heritage Open Days (12-13 Sept) will be reported on in the next Newsletter. Suffice to say here that the Society's informative and colourful leaflets plus excellent coverage in the local press should have justified all the efforts of Dianne Hosking and other Society members.
Dance East opens on Friday, 9 October followed by celebratory activities on the Saturday and Sunday, including a dancing procession from the Cornhill to the Waterfront on the Saturday. We wish them every success.
A new IBC appointment, Waterfront Project Officer, seems a good idea "to co-ordinate development for residents and businesses." It also recognises the crying need to establish more links with the town centre - a huge task but one the Borough must contribute to.
'Ipswich in the Sixties' is a new archive compilation on DVD, available from the TIC at £9.99. It shows trolley buses, street clearances, queues for Beatles' tickets and ITFC's final game clinching the First Division Championship.
Ransomes Jacobsen at Ransomes Europark has made 40 workers redundant. Sales of grass cutting equipment have suffered during the recession. A spokesman said, "We have been manufacturing here for about 200 years and we want to make sure we stay here but we need to reduce costs." History is more complicated than that, but the sentiment is commendable.
IBC is refurbishing Fore Street swimming baths, including re-roofing, new floors in changing rooms, new pool surround tiling, etc. It is 114 years old, the second oldest operating pool in England. Next year will be the turn of Crown Pools for refurbishment.
A Government grant of £52,000 has been allocated to IBC for unused town centre shops to be adapted for public uses. Although in itself a drop in the ocean it could be useful especially as Ipswich doesn't have a large number of empties. (Woolworths is the big eyesore.) Perhaps more important, it sets a valuable precedent in officially recognising that boarded up shops deter investors and shoppers.
Two members have written to draw attention to Napoli Dell, 67 Upper Orwell Street. "Hope members are finding this gem in a still run down area of Ipswich. Parking behind the shop."
On the Waterfront there are more children than expected living in the flats. Good evidence that this is more of a community now. But the lack of children's play areas is a concern. Diversity has exceeded developers' schemes - and their pockets!
Will a High Speed Rail link between London, the Midlands, the North and Scotland ever happen? Admirable if it gets people out of cars and especially out of planes. But British people are so good at finding reasons why not to do something radical! Unfortunately, here's another reason. Cities with the best communications links tend to trade with each other more and more in terms of economics and brains. So East Anglia could be left out even more!
Good news that the Caribbean Centre (Ipswich Caribbean Association) has apparently been saved. Not many housing units could have been built on this smallish site, yet this community facility, used by a number of different groups, would have been hard to replace. We hope the ICA can attract the necessary funding to continue using the Centre.