Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 23°C

min temp: 17°C

ESTD 1874 Search

The pigs have arrived. See the latest

Pigs Gone Wild

news here.

Wenhaston: Villagers angry at tree felling on railway site

08:45 30 January 2014

A commemorative sign marks the site of the former Wenhaston station on the Southwold to Halesworth railway in the Blyth Valley

A commemorative sign marks the site of the former Wenhaston station on the Southwold to Halesworth railway in the Blyth Valley

Developers of a heritage railway have agitated their new neighbours by cutting down trees before getting consent to build.

Although no planning rules are being breached at the site in Wenhaston - where the Southwold Railway Trust (SRT) wants to reinstate a stretch of the old Halesworth to Southwold line - objectors claim the group is “preparing the ground” for a positive outcome to its bid.

The Trust, which bought the land last May after Suffolk Coastal threw out its first application for a half-mile track and heritage centre, said it was preserving the site while it mounts an appeal against the decision.

SRT spokesman, Reverend Simon Pitcher said: “We can understand the concern, but this is not what is happening. Heavy winds caused quite a lot of damage to trees. Some fell over and some died. We are carrying out responsible stewardship on trees that have not been managed for a long time.”

Sarah Montague, whose family live at the east end of the proposed line, said: “It’s unnerving to see that work is taking place before planning permission has been given. They are cutting down something they said would be preserved.”

The original application included plans to improve wildlife habitats in the Blyth Valley - a commitment Mrs Montague’s husband, Phil, says has not been met. He added: “SRT has felled a substantial area of woodland on this land and destroyed an area of previously undisturbed flora and fauna, which had been slowly reclaiming this area over the eight decades since the railway closure.”

The initial proposal also generated disapproval from the parish council, which objected to a heritage centre being built on a flood plain and an anticipated increase in traffic. Councillor Ann Edwards said a letter had been sent to Suffolk Coastal expressing concern that the work already done could prejudice any environmental impact assessment. “We believe that whatever work is done, is likely to interfere with wildlife,” she said. “They are not acting unlawfully but it certainly doesn’t help get the village onside.”

A spokesman for Suffolk Coastal said: “After being made aware of local concerns, an officer visited the site and found the removal of either dead or dying elm and the cutting back of brambles and mature willow.

“The officer concluded that none of the work was unlawful.”

1 comment

  • i would love to see a section of railway line where the station used to be if i lived in the area.i am sure there will be an engine also.

    Report this comment

    TERENCE MANNING

    Thursday, January 30, 2014

Suffolk Police PCSOs (stock picture)

Two new PCSOs will be patrolling the streets of Bury St Edmunds from next January in a new step for local policing.

The scene as emergency services mounted a rescue at Sea Palling. Photo: Contributed.

A man in his 50s has died and another in his 20s was resuscitated after they got into difficulty in the water at Sea Palling.

Eastbound A14 traffic near the Copdock junction. Image: Keith Mindham

Drivers are currently experiencing long delays after a car crashed into the central reservation on the A14 eastbound at Nacton this evening.

Andy Beckwith

A former Essex man who went missing in Gibraltar has been found “in good health”, police have said.

A motorist involved in a crash on the A14 in which a teenager died will live with the “huge remorse” for the rest of his life, a court has heard.

Brendan Wright. Pic: Essex Police.

A Colchester man has been reported missing to police.

The Essex and Herts Air Ambulance

A five-year-old boy has been airlifted to hospital with serious head injuries after a crash in north-east Essex.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24