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Boundary changes

PUBLISHED: 13:25 14 July 2008 | UPDATED: 20:52 05 July 2010

ANOTHER old debate has reared its head again this week with the latest announced proposals for the change of local government concerning Lowestoft.

After 20 years of residence in this characteristic town I have always thought that we have been stuck out on a limb from Suffolk County Council's Ipswich-centred jurisdiction and care.

ANOTHER old debate has reared its head again this week with the latest announced proposals for the change of local government concerning Lowestoft.

After 20 years of residence in this characteristic town I have always thought that we have been stuck out on a limb from Suffolk County Council's Ipswich-centred jurisdiction and care.

My own personal confrontational experience with the county council over the funding retraction, closure and sale of the Seagull Theatre reinforces this view and I believe that there is a need for a change of attitude from our controlling bodies.

Journal editor Russell Cook suggested on regional TV that if the new regime would support and resolve serious local issues, such as the third crossing, then that may be something to consider. This is a view that many people will echo.

But there is one major hurdle we need to get over before the wider picture can be seen. The association of Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth, the new Yartoft, does not appear to be popular in either towns.

Surprisingly this rivalry goes back to the 12th century, when the two harbours were equally viable.

During the early middle ages Norwich was the government and provided financial support for both towns but they eventually developed Lowestoft harbour first. If the new proposals have a chance to work then the people of Waveney and Yarmouth have to forget the past and look to what is best for the future. Each place can retain its individuality.

Surely this is the most important issue of Lowestoft's survival at the moment and it should be openly put out to the local population for a democratic debate with all the facts available.

Change could be for the better and does history and geographical boundaries have to stand in the way?

It will take some huge promises, along with long term commitment to sway the view, but going on the past I feel that this will be an issue than bubbles over for many years. History often repeats itself.

GARY HILTON

Via email


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