A1117 at the junction of Millennium Way and Grasmere Drive, Oulton
Tree lined Normanston Drive, Oulton... (C) Adrian S Pye
Lowestoft, correctly pronounced Lows-toft is a coastal town in Suffolk. The town is on the North Sea coast and is the most easterly point of the United Kingdom. It is 110 miles (177 km) north-east of London, 38 miles (61 km) north-east of Ipswich (the county town) and 22 miles (35 km) south-east of Norwich. It is situated on the edge of the Broads system and is the major settlement within the district of Waveney named after the main river with an estimated population of 58,560 in 2010.
Some of the earliest evidence of settlement in Britain has been found in Lowestoft, and the town has a long history. It is a port town which developed due to the fishing industry, and a traditional seaside resort. It has wide, sandy beaches, two piers and a number of other tourist attractions. Whilst its fisheries have declined, the development of oil and gas exploration in the southern North Sea in the 1960s led to the development of the town as a base for the industry. The town has recently begun to develop as a centre of the renewable energy industry within the East of England.
Lowestoft consists of the small parishes of Kirkley, Pakefield, Carlton Colville and Oulton Broad to the south of the harbour and Normanston, Gunton, Corton and Oulton to the north.
The harbour, and Lake Lothing creates a distinct north - south divide in the town and the harbour or Bascule Bridge is a perpetual problem causing traffic chaos within the town when open for pleasure yachts and shipping. Lake Lothing provides access via Oulton Broad and Oulton Dyke to the River Waveney, Beccles and the Norfolk Broads.
Lowestoft has been subject to periodic flooding, most notably in January 1953 when a North Sea swell driven by low pressure and a high tide swept away many of the older sea defences and deluged most of the southern town. Heavy rain caused flash flooding in the town in September 2006. December 2013 storm surge caused severe flooding of Lowestoft and its suburbs in December 2013.