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Scenic walkway is officially opened in Beccles

PUBLISHED: 14:19 21 April 2018 | UPDATED: 16:04 21 April 2018

Graham Catchpole and mayor Richard Stubbings open The Avene. They are joined by members of Helping Hands.
Picture: Anthony Carroll

Graham Catchpole and mayor Richard Stubbings open The Avene. They are joined by members of Helping Hands. Picture: Anthony Carroll

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A celebration has been held to mark the opening of a new look pedestrian avenue that makes it way through a scenic setting in Beccles.

Graham Catchpole gives his speech at the official opening of The Avenue.
Picture: Anthony CarrollGraham Catchpole gives his speech at the official opening of The Avenue. Picture: Anthony Carroll

On Saturday morning The Avenue, which runs from the town’s station to Beccles Common, was officially opened following a £36,000 improvement project funded following a mayoral appeal

The scheme to improve the walkway, which was said to be muddy mess in the winter months and hard for wheelchair users and people with buggies to use, was the brainchild of Graham Catchpole.

He had launched The Avenue work appeal while he was town mayor in 2017/18 as 2017 marked the 150th anniversary of its creation.

MORE; avenue work appeal

On Saturday at 11am Mr Catchpole was on hand with the current mayor, Richard Stubbings, to officially open The Avenue in front of dozens of people, including some from groups that had supported the project such as Helping Hands and the town’s Lions club.

He said: “The Avenue had become a muddy mess in the winter months and I felt something needed to be done, especially as last year was its 150th anniversary.

“This area is a lovely area and it is a nice place to walk as it is very quiet, you don’t hear any cars.”

During his opening speech Mr Catchpole said one of the highlights of the fundraising appeal was a Halloween night at the Common organised Beccles Carnival Committee, which raised more than £1,500 and saw people dress as zombies.

He also thanked everyone who had supported his appeal.

MORE; improvement work starts

Work started on The Avenue back in November when a six-week closure was put in place and the main construction work was completed in December by Farrow Construction.

The new look route won the seal of approval from Mr Stubbings.

He said: “It was wonderful to see. It is part of the fact that Beccles is improving and getting better.”

The work included installing a drainage system at the bottom of the footbridge which goes over the train line to stop water collecting and flooding, along with a two-metre wide hard-wearing footpath which has been laid along the quarter of a mile stretch, linking in with the existing pathways.

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