PLANS to erect a fence to keep swans at bay at a beauty spot have been welcomed by residents.

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Brundon Mill, in Sudbury, is well-known for the water fowl that congregate in the area and the site is popular with families who often stop to feed the birds.

But there are fears the swan population has grown too large.

One resident, who asked not to be named, said: “ We’ve counted over 100 swans here some days.

“The problem is they have got used to people and they often come out of the water and onto the road in pursuit of food when people approach with bread.

“It has become dangerous for both people and the swans because the road on the bridge is narrow and used by motorists who live here or own businesses in the area.”

Concerns have grown about safety on the lane since a grandmother was badly injured by a vehicle as she stood on the bridge feeding swans with her granddaughter last year.

In response, Sudbury Common Lands Charity, which manages land adjoining the mill pond, has proposed erecting a fence to keep the birds in the water and has taken advice from the RSPB on the issue.

But construction of the fence must wait until the Environment Agency first builds a canoe portage point on the bank.

“Construction of the portage point is subject to funding and planning permission and will not take place until at least the new financial year in 2013,” said a spokesperson for the agency.

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