Concern raised over plans for bridge at wet dock in Ipswich

Plans for a new road bridge across the river at New Cut West could affect Debbage Yachting which hou

Plans for a new road bridge across the river at New Cut West could affect Debbage Yachting which house yachts in the area. - Credit: Archant

Concern has been raised over the prospect of a bridge and road link across Ipswich’s wet dock.

The ambitious idea to build the bridge connecting the island part of the wet dock with New Cut West, close to Bath Street was announced last year, and hopes to alleviate some of the traffic problems around Key Street and other congested areas of the town.

But the news has not been welcomed by Debbage Yachting, a family run business which offers mooring and storage for boats along New Cut West.

One of the business’s partners, Rob Nixon, said: “It would completely close us down because it is pretty much on top of us about 50 yards from where our moorings are.

“I don’t know where we would relocate to, I think we would just be closed down.”

One of Mr Nixon’s concerns was that the bridge may not be able to accomodate some of the taller boats that use the mooring, with some as high as 40 or 50ft high.

While no firm plans have been made for the project, chancellor George Osbourne included £2million in his budget on Wednesday for detailed plans to be drawn up.

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But after speaking with Debbage Yachting, Ipswich MP Ben Gummer has assured businesses along New Cut West that they would be involved in a detailed consultation when thorough plans have been made.

“There are businesses on the consultation panel, and nothing is going to be done without consultation,” he said. “The aim of this is to enhance the businesses in the area.”

The MP said there would be benefits to the scheme, including easing traffic around town by offering an alternate route around the Waterfront, as well as enabling development of the island site for a high-technology centre linked to University Campus Suffolk.

He added: “We need to do it properly in consultation with everyone, and that is the purpose money - to make sure we design it correctly.”

Mr Nixon added: “Seeing the plans would be the best thing. If it will help and wont affect us that is great, but we are worried about it affecting us so much.”

A feasability study is set to take place in due course, which alongside more detailed plans, aims to identify where the best route to connect with the town would be.