Felixstowe: New milestone in changing seafront scene

Neil Perkins, Louise Trail, Robert Whiting, Ray Herring and Tim Buff amongst some of the new facili

Neil Perkins, Louise Trail, Robert Whiting, Ray Herring and Tim Buff amongst some of the new facilities that have been put in place on Felixstowe Sea front South as part of the Martello Park development.

A multi-million pound regeneration project has been hailed as paving the way for wider investment and growth along a Suffolk seafront.

Martello Park developers yesterday unveiled two new public car parks - due to open along Felixstowe’s south seafront next Monday.

After going undeveloped for 30 years, work began last summer on the 17.5-acre site, owned by Suffolk Coastal, which struck a deal with Bloor Homes to bring property and leisure facilities to the area, including play areas and pedestrian routes, as well as fund the repair and refurbishment of a Martello tower.

When complete, the development will comprise 97 three-bed homes and 30 two-bed flats - with 13 affordable units. So far, 30 of the 32 complete properties have been filled.

District council leader, Ray Herring said: “It has been a complex site to develop, being primarily owned by Suffolk Coastal, but also by a number of other private owners. We had to purchase that land and overcome other issues like flood risk.

“This area was overdue for redevelopment, but when people see growth, they will likely to bring in external investment to other parts of Felixstowe.”

Mr Herring said other schemes were being looked at to further regenerate the seafront. Although a new operator has yet to be found for the Spa Pavilion a year on from its closure, he insisted there is interest in the site, as well as plans for a multi-million pound new pier.

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“Felixstowe is going through change,” he said. “The tremendous interest from supermarkets gives a measure of the confidence in the area. It’s is a growth area for employment and this development also helps us meet our housing need.”

Along with new pedestrian and cycle links, the town now has an extra 261 pay-and-display parking spaces, likely to generate several thousand pounds a year for the district. Head of resources, Robert Whiting said: “Bloor has done a splendid job of regenerating this area and making it more attractive for residents, day-trippers and tourists.”