Henham Park bridge opened for Latitude Festival

This is the latest edition to grace the grounds at Henham Park, just in time for festival goers at this year's Latitude Festival.

Organisers have invested heavily into the site between Beccles and Southwold, and today saw the official opening of the new permanent bridge onsite.

Named 'The Writer's Bridge', managing director of Festival Republic, organisers of the festival, Melvin Benn, explained that its name derives from literature, which is at the heart of the event.

'I am delighted with it,' he said.

'The most significant thing is that it recognises the permanence of Latitude in the area. At the heart of Latitude is the poetry and literature tent and writing is at the heart of everything at the festival, from the musicians to the stage writers and comedians, writing really is what Latitude is all about.'

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The bridge, which Mr Benn said has cost 'hundreds of thousands of pounds', will help to ease congestion and is just one example of how organisers are keen to improves facilities.

The second 'floating' bridge, used in previous years, will return again and has been placed adjacent to The Writer's Bridge.

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The design fits in the landscape of Henham Park with panels of wood designed to reflect the river of which it sits over.

Mr Benn said: 'It has been made primarily of wood and steel and I love it. The little wavey bits work really well and I think the kids will love it.'

Mr Benn was also joined by Bernard Reader, chairman for Waveney Tourism Forum, Kirsty Chapman, vice chairman for Waveney Tourism Forum, Peter Aldous, Waveney MP, Andy Wright, head of service for Waveney District Council and Suffolk Coastal Disctric Council, Asa Morrison, principal service manger and Hektor Rous, estate manager.

The team were also joined by Theresa Coffey, Suffolk Coastal MP, who cut the earthy green coloured ribbon, complete with festive bow, to announce the bridge officially open.

She said: 'I think this is a wonderful bridge and many people will use it.

'It looks lovely and fits in with the general feeling of Latitude. I feel honoured to be here and it's wonderful news for our part of Suffolk. Latitude is a great jewel in the crown.'

Melvin Benn said that he thought over 400,000 journeys would be made over the bridge at this year's Latitude Festival alone and added that plans were on-going for the site, including plans to make the arena bigger.

The festival runs from July 14 to July 17.

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