Work has officially started at ‘The Ness’, the most easterly park in the UK.
The site of the park, next to Birds Eye on Whapload Road in Lowestoft, will be regenerated with £1m secured from the Coastal Community Fund in 2017.
The Ness, which is being delivered by Lowestoft Town Council, East Suffolk Council and Concertus Design and Property Consultants working in partnership, will celebrate Lowestoft’s maritime heritage and feature a picnic and play area, a bespoke bridge to the sea wall as well as interactive and educational information. The site, which will be sensitively landscaped to protect the area’s unique flora and fauna, also includes the seafront walkway and the most easterly point in the UK, Ness Point.
An official ‘sod-turning’ event was held on Wednesday 22 January to mark the beginning of the works, which are being carried out by Blakedown Landscapes and are expected to be complete by early summer.
Cllr Craig Rivett, East Suffolk’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Regeneration said:
“I am delighted to see work underway at The Ness; the park will provide an exciting new space for residents and visitors to enjoy and create a focus for the most easterly point in the country.”
Alice Taylor, Mayor of Lowestoft said:
“Lowestoft is moving forward with several great new projects starting up and this new Ness Park is the first of many that will brighten up the town and improve the quality of life for all of her citizens. This park is a permanent improvement for a patch of disused land and will enhance the health and wellbeing of everyone, young and old, while celebrating our rich heritage."
Annett Thompson, Senior Project Manager at Concertus Design and Property Consultants said:
"Concertus Design and Property Consultants are very pleased to be involved in this project, it is a unique site with a fascinating history that should be recognised as a British landmark and a place to visit."
The contractor, Blakedown Landscapes, is a multi award-winning landscaping company with 50 years of experience. Their projects include Hunstanton Park in North Norfolk, Camden Active Spaces and the historic restoration of Brockwell Park Gardens in London.
Allen Scott Landscape Architects have provided the design for the Ness to create a vibrant, creative and interactive community space that expresses the exciting heritage and maritime history of the area. They have detailed knowledge of the coastal environment having recently completed the Great Yarmouth Waterways Restoration.
The Ness sits within the boundary of the North Lowestoft Heritage Action Zone, which will bring further funding to the area to uplift North Lowestoft through heritage led regeneration.
Whilst construction is underway, the area is not accessible to the public for safety reasons. Access to the seawall is available via Ness Point and Ting Dene.