Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 25°C

min temp: 19°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Blakenham: Giant greenhouse proposal recommended for approval

10:32 16 May 2014

Michael Blakenham, who is proposing to build large greenhouses to use heat from the incinerator.

Michael Blakenham, who is proposing to build large greenhouses to use heat from the incinerator.

Councillors are being recommended to approve proposals for two huge new greenhouses to be built at Great Blakenham.

The greenhouses would produce millions of tomatoes and would create up to 200 jobs – but local residents are concerned about their size and their likely impact on roads in the area.

The £30 million project will be discussed by members of Mid Suffolk Council’s planning committee next week, and officers are recommending the councillors should give them the authority to approve the application providing conditions are met.

The greenhouses would use heat generated by the nearby incinerator burning waste from across Suffolk, and part of Norfolk, which is due to start operating within a few months.

Michael Blakenham of Sterling Suffolk, the company behind the project, said: “As well as enormous environmental benefits, this project provides a significant boost to the local economy with jobs on site as well as spin-off benefits for a variety of local businesses.

“We have funders waiting in the wings to back this project, but we haven’t been able to make progress without planning permission.

“If we get approval there are still hurdles to overcome, but I am confident we can be up and running by the end of next year.”

The greenhouses would cover an area of nearly 50 acres and produce 7,500 tonnes of tomatoes a year.

Currently only one in six tomatoes eaten in the UK is grown here. The rest are imported – bringing with them all the extra transport costs and traffic pollution.

The project has the backing of The Greenery, one of the main distributors buying and selling salad produce throughout the UK and Europe, as well as incinerator operators SITA UK and Suffolk County Council.

The project includes safety improvements to the B1113 and extensive tree planting.

Local residents are currently considering their response to the application, and are expected to make their position clear at next week’s meeting.

2 comments

  • Presumably foreign finance, taking the profits, paying no taxes and paying low wages. Since it's clearly a SCC project, could they insist on payment of fair wages to whoever gets the promised jobs, and keeping the profits here?

    Report this comment

    Blackeye

    Friday, May 16, 2014

  • 200 British Jobs or 200 agency gangmaster jobs for Eastern European migrants? I will keep an eye out if this gets approval and goes ahead, to see whether it gets advertised to unemployed people here of whatever race and nationality, first.

    Report this comment

    Ipswich Entrepreneur

    Friday, May 16, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Large crowds at last year's Clacton Airshow. Low cloud has delayed the event this year

Plans have been forced to abort their displays at the Clacton Airshow today because of poor flying conditions.

Thomas Gainsborough GCSE 2016 group picture

Students at Great Cornard’s Thomas Gainsborough School, which had some of the most improved maths and English results in Suffolk, have spoken of their delight on GCSE results day.

Stour Valley Community School headteacher Christine Inchley with top student Lewis Ruddock and parents Lynne and Mark

A schoolboy at Stour Valley Community School achieved its best-ever GCSE results today.

GCSE results day at Clacton Coastal Academy.

Year 11 pupils across north Essex are celebrating another bumper crop of GCSE results this year.

Pupils celebrate at the Sudbury Ormiston Academy - Gemma Marsh and James Cooper

Special praise went to a GCSE student from Ormiston Sudbury Academy who passed his English and maths exams after having open heart surgery when he was 13.

Charlie Vickers, Clacton Coastal Academy pupil, with his results.

One student battled illness and grief during GCSE studies and still achieved good grades.

West Suffolk pupils receive their GCSE results
Emotional King Edward VI School pupils in Bury St Edmunds

Schools across the area are celebrating outstanding GCSE results after months of waiting.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

MyDate24 MyPhotos24