£47k pavement project for Whiting Street in Bury St Edmunds


Published:
4:00 PM February 4, 2022



A plea has been made for town centre works to be coordinated so as to avoid digging up £47,000 pavement repairs.

Long-awaited plans to fix broken footways in Whiting Street in Bury St Edmunds’ historic centre moved forward at the last full Bury St Edmunds Town Council meeting.

The town council agreed to spend just over £47,000 on the repairs, which will remove trip hazards, and that it would take into account the views of the local community. 

The project to fix broken footways in Whiting Street had been in limbo, but funding of £47,000 has now been agreed


The project to fix broken footways in Whiting Street had been in limbo, but funding of £47,000 has now been agreed

– Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

Vivien Gainsborough Foot, chairman of the Churchgate Area Association, which represents residents and businesses in the medieval grid area, said people welcomed the plans as the footways were “really awful” – but added work needed to be coordinated with CityFibre.

CityFibre is building a new full fibre network across the town and work in Whiting Street is scheduled for the summer.

Speaking of the planned pavement repairs, Mrs Gainsborough Foot said: “We are delighted, absolutely delighted. It’s wonderful.

“Of course we have to make absolutely sure they do it after CityFibre digs everything up.

“I have pointed out it would be complete madness to redo the pavements and then CityFibre dig it up again. It would be a complete waste of money.”

Vivien Gainsborough Foot, chairman of the Churchgate Area Association, in Whiting Street in the Medi


Vivien Gainsborough Foot, chairman of the Churchgate Area Association, in Whiting Street in the medieval grid

– Credit: Archant

CityFibre has apologised in the past following complaints that their workers “messily dug up” verges and pavements.

A spokesman for CityFibre confirmed their timetable for work in Whiting Street is July 18 to September 9.

He said: “We work closely with the county highways to coordinate our works.

“They will ensure the work is scheduled in a sensible sequence, i.e. we do our bit before any other resurfacing.”

Bury St Edmunds town clerk Greg Luton said there was no agreed timeframe yet for the footway repairs to be undertaken.

He said: “In December 2019, the town council agreed to allocate funding to support the repair of the footways in Whiting Street because we knew this work was not going to be able to be done under the current Suffolk County Council guidelines for repairs.

“The work was for repairs to the broken pavements and it was a long-term aspiration for residents and councillors alike.”

The work was scheduled to start in March 2020, but got delayed when the country went into lockdown. There were also supply chain problems and the previously contracted repairers ceased trading.

It is understood the pavement repairs will be at the southern end of Whiting Street, but Mr Luton said the details are yet to be agreed.

Cllr Joanna Rayner


Abbeygate district councillor Joanna Rayner

– Credit: Gregg Brown

Whiting Street falls within the town centre conservation area.

Ward councillor Joanna Rayner said similar materials would be used to what is there already.

She said it was “really, really good” to get the project moving, adding people were really welcoming of the scheme during consultation over the last week.

“It’s really exciting,” she said. “It’s great to get that level of funding in the town. It will benefit many, not just the residents. It is a through-road for people using it.”

Whiting Street, Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Sarah Lucy Brown


Whiting Street is in the Bury St Edmunds town centre conservation area

– Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

The cash is from the town council’s pavement budget, which deals with low grade repairs, and the work will be carried out by Suffolk County Council contractors.

Mrs Rayner added residents can come forward to use the annual budget in their areas.

Suffolk County Council was contacted for comment.



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