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May 25 2023
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Heritage Quay plans for Brightlingsea Hard revised following criticism

Revised plans for a proposed quay on Brightlingsea Hard have been drawn up by Brightlingsea Town Council following objections by Essex County Council.

The original scheme for a raised deck area – now dubbed the Heritage Community Quay – in front of the Colne Yacht Club came in for criticism for blocking the view from the flats in the Grade II listed former Anchor Hotel and for not including an archaeological survey of the area.

As a result of the objections, the town council’s technical group has now revised the shape of the deck so that it doesn’t extend any further than the western wall of the Colne Yacht Club, though it will now project 15m further out from the edge of the Hard. The original plans were for a deck 40m wide by 25m deep, whereas the revised plan shows a construction that will be 35m wide by 40m deep, making the new version 400 sq m bigger. An archaeological survey has now been completed and delivered to the town council.

harbour plan1
An artist’s impression of what the Heritage Quay could look like

In minutes from the last full town council meeting, the technical group states: “We feel that this change in shape and size fulfils the ECC heritage objection.” It also admits as that the original artist’s impressions of the plan – seen here – “gave much confusion the group felt that only block and elevation plans should be used in any consultation”.

The aim of the project is to provide a community space that can be used for various events, with the provision of a jetty for mooring traditional barges and smacks. Funding for the deck area has not yet been secured – although the group says that “two heritage funding opportunities were identified as suitable for application”. As part of the project, a floating jetty extending from the Hard has been installed over the summer at a cost of around £75,000 – including a £25,000 contribution from Brightlingsea Town Council.

Once the funding for the deck has been secured, it’s planned that the jetty – which can currently only be used by commercial fishing and angling boats – will be dismantled and placed on the seaward side of the deck. In August the council issued a statement refuting suggestions that the scheme was a “vanity project” and a “waste of money”.


Comment on this article


  1. Be lovely in the South of France! I only hope the resident’s will be able to put up with loud music, traffic congestion and expected vandalism..I’m a realist not an idealist…

  2. Planning for the Heritage Quay and B,sea foot ferry landing stage at Point Clear was made and submitted to TDC and passed at the same time ,
    The Heritage Quay seem an expensive folly by BTC ,
    The foot ferry landing stage at Point Clear would be better for both communities both sides of B,sea Creek , for push chairs and wheel chairs.

  3. Whenever I see a local council proposing a project like this (to supposedly attract more people into the town), I wonder if the council members would be happy to fund it out of their own cash instead of spending other peoples money? If councillors are not prepared to take the money out of their wallets, why should they put their hands in our wallets?

    If this is an investment, what is the mechanism for paying back the cash spent? Will the Town Council be able to surcharge shop keepers, pubs and charter boats for the extra trade bought in by the “new attraction” It always seems very wrong for a council to spend someone else’s money without a clear return on the spending.


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