Boat Building Back at the Colne

Boat building looks set to return to the muddy banks of the Colne.

Hurrah!

Steady the buffers, etc.

They’ll be pumping water out of that giant Victorian tower thing in the centre of town next.

The esteemed Planning Committee at CBC will consider an application [pdf] by Ctruk Boats Ltd to open up a new warehouse in the Fieldgate Building, Haven Road when it next meets at the Town Hall on 5 February.

The Officer recommendation is to APPROVE.

And thank the chuffers for that.

The full planning application asks for:

“Retention of one of the existing warehouses and its refurbishment. The retained warehouse will be linked to the new commercial building which will be used for the manufacture of boats.”

The CBC Planning report observes:

“Members will be aware that many of the traditional industrial uses in this area of Colchester have declined. Whilst new uses have moved into the area they do not require a river location and as a consequence the vitality of and activity along the water front has been lost.”

The CBC Planning Committee has also been responsible over the past decade or so for allowing bland Buy to Lets to spring up along the Colne where boats were once built.

Take a wander down towards the Hythe and you can get all misty-eyed about heavy industry and boat building along the muddy banks.

Sadly those days of this part of the town being defined by industry are long gone. The stretch just past the old Bridge House and out towards the Moors is looking a little lost.

But Ctruk Boats Ltd (and hopefully others) think that there is still a market in which to trade. Bringing a small section of this industry back to Sunny Colch is ACE.

There are a few minor technicalities to overcome for the Planning Committee. The report asks for some modifications such as tree planting.

‘cos the Victorian boat builders of Sunny Colch were *oh so concerned* about bloody sustainability.

The Colchester Cycling Campaign also gets a little over-excited about the possibility of the application opening up a cycling route from Rowhedge to the Hythe.

But that’s for another time.

Bring on the Sunny Colch boats we say.