Summer start scheduled for £830,000 marina work

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WORK on the £830,000 marina planned for Sutton Bridge is due to start in July and finish by the end of this year.

Lincolnshire County Council claims the project will boost the local economy by £200,000 or more per year, creating new jobs and safeguarding existing ones.

Almost half the cost – £400,000 – will be met by Section 106 money from the power station fund managed by South Holland District Council.

And £300,000 will come from the LEADER funding initiative of the Rural Development Programme for England, supported by the European Commission and Defra.

The county council, which won planning consent for the project in December 2010, is chipping in £130,000.

In last week’s Spalding Guardian, Port Sutton Bridge founder Peter Clery questioned the use of £400,000 from the power station money to fund the marina – and asked if £150,000 of that could be put to one side for a multi-sports complex.

Mr Clery, who chairs the community centre, also said it was unclear how the people of Sutton Bridge would benefit from the marina expenditure.

This week county council head of enterprise Justin Brown told the Spalding Guardian: “The new marina will attract thousands of visitors to the area. Our research suggests this will benefit the local economy to the tune of £200,000 a year.

“This would be a valuable boost for local businesses and is predicted to lead to new jobs with further ones protected.

“The project is likely to kick-start further investment and regeneration in the area, meaning the long term benefits are likely to be even greater.

“Steady progress continues to be made and we’re hoping to have everything wrapped up by the end of the year.”

The plan is to create 80 moorings – 70 will be permanent, with half used by people living in the area and half by people living outside. Ten will be for visitors.

Work also includes refurbishment of the promenade and creating new parking spaces.

Nene Marine community group was formed to take the project forward with backing from Fenland District Council, Port of Wisbech, the Environment Agency and the county council.

l See letters, page 6.