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New plant centre and toilet block at Ickworth House

PUBLISHED: 10:17 08 June 2014

Opening of new plant and garden centre and toilet block at Ickworth House. Left to right, Regional Director for NT East of England, Ben Cowell and Linda Munday.

Opening of new plant and garden centre and toilet block at Ickworth House. Left to right, Regional Director for NT East of England, Ben Cowell and Linda Munday.

Visitors to the National Trust’s Ickworth estate, near Bury St Edmunds, can now enjoy improved facilities following a £400,000 project.

Yesterday, the new plant and garden centre and toilet block, in the main car park at Ickworth, were officially opened at an event which was a chance to thank those involved in the scheme.

Sue Borges, marketing and engagement manager at Ickworth, said the previous portable toilets were only supposed to be temporary, but they had been there for at least up to 10 years.

She added the plant centre had been very popular, but it needed to be in a more suitable building.

She said: “With nearly 200,000 visitors a year now with two thirds visiting the parkland and gardens we need better facilities. We’ve got a lovely new building which had to be in keeping with the environment because we have Grade II Listed status parkland.”

Mrs Borges added a ‘mini stumpery’ had been installed at the plant centre to give visitors a taste of what is in the gardens.

They can also buy a lot of the plants featured in the gardens at the centre, which has a landscaped area outside with an Italianate theme.

Amongst those attending yesterday’s celebrations were Ben Cowell, regional director for National Trust East of England, and Anthea Case, chairman of the National Trust East of England Advisory Board.

The work began in January and was completed in May.

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Members of a drugs gang which dealt more than £250,000 worth of crack and heroin in Ipswich by exploiting vulnerable addicts have been jailed for a total of 25 years.

Ipswich Building Society demonstrates its commitment to its branch network - with Mutual House.

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A new lifesaving defibrillator has been installed in the town centre of Bury St Edmunds after a campaigning local businessman, the Business Improvement District (BID) organisation Our Bury St Edmunds and the town’s McDonald’s restaurant joined forces.

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Essex’s Police, Fire and Crime Panel has approved an average £12 increase in council tax - which looks to provide 150 more frontline officers in the county.

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