The Southwold Railway 1879 -1929

PRESS RELEASE - JULY 5th 2007

SOUTHWOLD RAILWAY PHASE 1

The Trust is disappointed, but not surprised, at the decisions by both Suffolk Coastal and Waveney District Councils to refuse planning permission for the above. Although some of the information supplied as part of the planning applications had been overlooked or in some cases misread by consultees, the Trust accepts that more information with respect to landscape, wildlife and flood risk issues needs to be supplied. This is expensive to achieve and the Trust has limited resources. As expected, there has been a campaign to misrepresent the project, and create unnecessary fears, to the extent that it was unlikely to receive a fair hearing. It has recently been announced that the government, being aware that infrastructure projects are easily vetoed, is preparing to take such proposals out of the planning system. It may be possible to pursue the project in future via new machinery, but we can see that there is little chance, however much information we provide, of realising the project via the current planning process. The Trust, whilst noting the points that have been made, remains of the belief that the project would serve local community interests in a number of ways. It is also aware that there is a lot of support for the project although this tends to be less noisy than the opposition. However, until such time as circumstances may permit pursuit of what is certainly an ambitious project, the Trust will set its sights lower and will be proposing a smaller and possibly less controversial project.

 

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