Mistley quay fence row talks break down

ATTEMPTS to break the deadlock over a controversial security fence put up at a picturesque Essex quay have failed and legal action will now be taken, it was claimed last night.

Elliot Furniss

ATTEMPTS to break the deadlock over a controversial security fence put up at a picturesque Essex quay have failed and legal action will now be taken, it was claimed last night.

Many residents in Mistley were furious after the fence was put up along the village's quayside -restricting the view and cutting off access to the public.

But the company which owns the quay, Trent Wharfage, has said the fence is necessary and stems from advice from the health and safety executive.


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Yesterday, representatives from the firm met with members from the protest group Free the Quay to discuss the situation and try to reach an agreement.

However, the two-hour meeting ended in stalemate, said committee member and parish councillor Kate Worsley.

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She said: “They told us they are going to carry on building the fence and the aim of it is to stop access to and from the quay.

“We are now going to take legal action to establish public rights to the quay and the quayside.”

Mrs Worsley added: “We are very, very disappointed.

“They say they want to eliminate as much health and safety risk as possible. But there have never been any accidents there as far as we know.”

She said even when they complained about the design of the fence they were told it was the one which was considered the least visually intrusive from a range of options.

“We took legal advice last week and we are going to continue and begin to gather evidence,” said Mrs Worsley.

“We have started the process and we are going to carry on with it.”

Trent Wharfage were unable to comment on the meeting last night but have previously said it is following the requirements of the Docks Regulations Act 1988 by installing the fence at the quay, which is not currently in use for loading or discharging operations.

Tendring District Council planning officers are currently working to determine whether the fence needs planning permission and could ask for it to be removed or reduced in height.

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