Boatyard redevelopment leads to Maritime Woodbridge postponement decision

Maritime Woodbridge 2014

Maritime Woodbridge 2014 - Credit: Archant

Organisers of a regular riverside celebration have expressed regret at next year’s event being called off.

The decision was made to remove Maritime Woodbridge from the calendar due to the impending redevelopment of the old Whisstocks boatyard site, near the Tide Mill.

But the festival will make a return to the riverside in 2017, according to organisers, who see the redevelopment as a benefit for future years.

Developers have begun work to transform the old boatyard into apartments, retail space, a restaurant and heritage centre.

The old building and nearby Nunn’s Mill site has also been dismantled to make way for housing.


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Both schemes could be finished by September 2016, with Nunns Mill completed first.

Maritime Woodbridge started life as a part of National Heritage Open Days, supported by the Woodbridge Town Centre Management Group – now Choose Woodbridge.

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The late summer celebration proved so popular in 2006 and 2007 that it became an independent event, attracting thousands of visitors to Woodbridge in recent years.

Organisers believe that, in future, it will benefit from the new public open space and boat building shed planned for Whisstocks, as well as the relocated town museum.

Maritime Woodbridge treasurer, Professor Ted Evans said: “We were reluctant to drop the event for 2016, but concluded that not having the Whisstocks site available would have meant space for some of the main attractions could not be found.

“However, the redeveloped site will be a big benefit for future shows. We are already working on ideas for 2017, but would welcome new volunteers to join our committee.”

Anyone interested in getting involved should contact Professor Evans on 01394388295 or by emailing e.f.evans@keele.ac.uk.

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