Council promises Waterfront lighting in the New Year

The area of footpath, road and parking space from Stoke Bridge towards Dance East. Now the surface

The area of footpath, road and parking space from Stoke Bridge towards Dance East. Now the surface has been improved, but there is no sign of the promised street lights. - Credit: Archant

The Stoke Bridge area - a main approach to Ipswich Waterfront - is dark and dangerous for pedestrians at night.

The Stoke Bridge area, at the entrance to Ipswich Waterfront, has no street lights, making it unplea

The Stoke Bridge area, at the entrance to Ipswich Waterfront, has no street lights, making it unpleasant for pedestrians. These photos were taken early in the evening this week. Businesses in the area say it is important that street lights are installed. - Credit: Archant

Local business people are worried about the “dark” Stoke Bridge area of Ipswich at night and it not being welcoming to visitors to the area.

It is dark and dangerous at night, and only lit up well by the headlights of passing cars.

This is even more puzzling as Suffolk Country Council highways has improved the road in the area, with a better surface and road markings, in order to make it a safer for pedestrians.

It is easy to see the improvements that have been made in daylight.

Scenes in Ipswich

Scenes in Ipswich - Credit: Archant

But you are just as likely to walk into one of the large concrete blocks that have been put there, to help protect pedestrians, when it is dark.

It was pitch black by 5.30pm the other night when I walked from Stoke Bridge to the university building, narrowly avoiding cyclists, motorcyclists and cars.

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At night people are parking nearby and walking to DanceEast for performances, and further onwards to cafes and restaurants and to the university buildings.

In some places additional lighting has been installed.

Waterfront businesses are worried.

Kathy Brooks, of the Bistro on the Quay, said: “It is not welcoming at all. It is quite dangerous.

“I understood they were going to include lighting in the scheme, possibly from one of the buildings.

“It is very disappointing. It is very dangerous at night, and it gets dark now from the late afternoon.”

Businesswoman Lynn Turner, owner of the Cake and Catwalk boutique in nearby St Peter’s Street, added: “It is very dark and depressing in the area near Stoke Bridge.

“I park there every day, and it gets dark very early. It is when I go back to my car.

“Some drivers are parking across the areas meant for pedestrians too. So it is a question of road safety

“Whatever the problem is, it is time something was done about lighting up the area at night.

“We have been promised that something would be done, for five or six years.”

Waterfront resident Antonio Bellini lives overlooking the marina with his wife.

He is a businessman and runs the Italian Shirt Shop in town. He said: “It really is dark at night.

“The ownership of land and the responsibility for lighting around the Waterfront is confusing.

“Some areas are better than others. It is difficult for residents to find out who is responsible for some of them, like the ones outside our apartment.

“We love living at the Waterfront.

“It really is a lovely place to live, but problems like this need sorting out.”

So who is responsible for street lighting in the area?

The area by Stoke Bridge now is under the control of Suffolk County Council.

A spokesman said; “This area was adopted by Suffolk County Council highways around this time last year. At that time a small amount of work was undertaken to bring the surface up to a maintainable standard.

“A more extensive scheme which will incorporate street lighting is currently being designed.

“Two floodlights will be installed, one at either end of the stretch on a temporary basis until the permanent scheme can be implemented.

“The work to install the lights is expected to commence early 2017.”

Do you feel the Stoke Bridge area of Ipswich Waterfront is safe for pedestrians at night?

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