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Surprise enhancement work improves access to river bank

PUBLISHED: 14:42 14 August 2018 | UPDATED: 14:42 14 August 2018

Caroline Topping at Waveney Meadow next to the new ramp. Picture: Conor Matchett

Caroline Topping at Waveney Meadow next to the new ramp. Picture: Conor Matchett

Archant

A river bank which was falling into the water has been repaired and had improved accessibility installed by the Environment Agency.

The improvements in Beccles. Picture: Environment AgencyThe improvements in Beccles. Picture: Environment Agency

The bank of the River Waveney in Beccles, next to Waveney Meadow, had been subsiding into the water before the Environment Agency stepped in.

After finishing their work on the river bank, however, the employees at the agency carried out further, unplanned work to improve access and safety next to the river.

The work included the building of an access ramp, which once fully settled will allow wheelchair users to access the area, and steps going down from the top of the ramp to the river bank.

Caroline Topping, Beccles Town councillor, said: “We were going to build a ramp but now it is here with a viewing area and some really shallow steps.

The improvements in Beccles. Picture: Environment AgencyThe improvements in Beccles. Picture: Environment Agency

“There is work down here still to be done as the bank is still falling in in some places and we are looking at replacing the play equipment on the meadow.”

One lady, who was walking her dog nearby, said: “This is the first time I have been down here since it flooded and at last it is dry.

“It will be good, it’s lovely.”

Rosemary Hewlett, who uses a wheelchair, said: “I managed to get there but the path still needs to settle a bit before anyone disabled tries it on their own.

“However, it is certainly a big improvement on the steps which used to be there and it was lovely to see the view of the river again.”

A spokesman for the Environment Agency said: “Our contractors carried out work to raise the banks to the appropriate flood defence level after they had settled over time.

“Whilst they were on site they carried out some further enhancement works which included steps down to the riverside and an improved access ramp up to the bank from the car park side.

“The team were pleased with the personal thanks they received from the Mayor of Beccles and hope that more people can now enjoy the riverside.”

Do you have a story in Beccles or Bungay? Email bbj.news@archant.co.uk with the details and a way for a reporter to contact you.

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