The Haven Gateway Partnership (HGP) is backing a major petition launched in support of proposals to build a new container terminal at Bathside Bay in Harwich. The petition campaign was set up by former Harwich MP Ivan Henderson, who describes it as “the last push” for the proposals, which were considered at a public inquiry last year.
Henderson aims to collect at least 10,000 signatures calling for the government to approve the plans by Hutchison Ports (UK). Copies of the petition are being distributed in pubs, shops and other venues throughout the Tendring district and supporters are also out on the streets collecting signatures.
“Wherever I go, people ask me for re-assurance that the Bathside Bay container terminal will go ahead,” he says. “The objectors are very good at making their voice heard, but the vast majority who are in favour of the development don’t tend to do anything about it. We have to try to raise the profile and shout about it a bit.”
An opinion poll commissioned by Hutchison Ports (UK) shortly after the Bathside Bay plans were announced showed that 85% of people in Harwich were in support. The government has said that a decision on the plans will be announced during the autumn.
Haven Gateway chairman George Courtauld comments: “We welcome this petition, which will reinforce the overwhelming support for Bathside Bay. “We are all aware that the proposed development is vital to the economy of the Haven Gateway region, the wellbeing of its 600,000 people and the prosperity of its 16,000 businesses.”