In July, we worked on a number of matters and this is an update on them.

Firstly, we noted with sadness the death of Cllr Matthew Horwood. Matthew was involved in many aspects of life in Southwold and was its Mayor 2017-18. He will be much missed and we pass on our best wishes to his family and colleagues.

Secondly, we had a presentation from the Mayor and Chairman of Planning of Southwold Town Council about their Planning Application for the redevelopment of their Station Road site. We strongly support the aims of this project which is one key part of the scheme to create a welcoming entrance to the town but also will create new space for small businesses and some affordable accommodation. Both these are needed to make our community sustainable. However, we also have concerns which we have now raised formally with the Town Council. Communication with the current tenants has not been effective enough and has led to worry, rumours and opposition. A transparent communication strategy is needed urgently. The Planning Application does not include parking, which is to be provided at the Millennium Car Park which is yet to have planning approval. This needs to be a formal condition before the Station Road scheme is approved. We have also asked that improvements are made to the design, especially the Blyth Road elevation which is too industrial to be part of the attractive entrance to the town we want to see. Finally, before the Town Council commits funding to the scheme we have asked for a full cost plan, business case and funding model to be developed and made public. We see this as essential to ensuring full community support.

Finally, we returned once more to the vexed question of sewage spills and continuing odours! So far our best efforts, those of the golf club and questions raised by both Southwold Town and Reydon Parish Councils have been met by little more than bland assurances. Our valiant new Chairman, Ridley Burnett has volunteered to work on developing a campaign! So watch this space for suggestions of how we can get Anglian Water to take the real and long-standing problem seriously and actually do something to improve the system.

                   Philip O’Hear, Secretary