Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 25°C

min temp: 15°C

Search

Could RAF Mildenhall become another Milton Keynes-style new town when USA forces move out in 2022?

PUBLISHED: 08:47 11 December 2015 | UPDATED: 08:47 11 December 2015

RAF Mildenhall - USAF forces are moving out

RAF Mildenhall - USAF forces are moving out

Archant

Concerns that a “Milden Keynes” new town could be created on RAF Mildenhall have been raised after the Government injected £230,000 to help planning for life after the US Air Force leaves by 2022.

It was announced earlier this week that Forest Heath District Council would receive the money, which will also help support planning for the Mildenhall public service hub project, which would bring a range of organisations, from the NHS to schools, on to one site.

While West Row resident John Smith welcomed the £230,000 as a “message” from the Government there will be no future military use, he said it has also raised the prospect of creating a new town, like Milton Keynes.

He said: “There have been very mixed messages coming from our politicians. In the absence of clear information people are creating their own versions. The ‘it will never close rumour’ now has such a hold that ‘buy to lets’ are still being built.

“Since they are now preparing for closure...we can only take that as a steer from those much higher up in the political machine.”

The MoD, who own the base, have pushed back the decision on whether they will have a military use for it. They are due to announce in early 2016. Mr Smith said the grant of £230,000 spread over both hub and base projects raised concerns over housing, claiming the hub was not “viable” without largescale housing expansion.

Mr Smith added: “By linking this to the base and in the absence of a commercial plan for the future it takes us neatly back to the ‘Milden Keynes’ scheme which is the very sort of project this government is so keen to promote.”

Forest Heath leader James Waters, hit back at Mr Smith, saying: “The future of Mildenhall is not a cheap soundbite or joke, it is very serious. We don’t yet know the future of the base, but we do know that communities back our stance that it must not be mothballed. If there is not to be a military use, our vision for the future of the base will include a large element of employment use.

“The hub is needed now and already viable, and is about delivering better joined up public services...at cheaper running costs.”

Rosalind Hamill, West Row member on Mildenhall Parish Council, called for more clarity. “When I saw they had awarded this money, my first thoughts were they must be certain what is happening with the base,” she said. “But no one has made an announcement. It just gets delayed and delayed – no one takes responsibility.”

Related articles

3 comments

  • Sounds from the previous comments that it would be off the 'Grid' !..

    Report this comment

    freedomf

    Friday, December 11, 2015

  • IanofNorfolk - Mildenhall is just off the dualled A11 by Fiveways. As part of any build it would be simple to put in a dual carriage link road near Station Road to West Row Road - only a golf course in the way. Though, I can see that the residents of the local villages would be concerned.

    Report this comment

    So_Many_Haters!

    Friday, December 11, 2015

  • Not really. Milton Keynes has motorway access, Norfolk has no motorways.

    Report this comment

    IanofNorfolk

    Friday, December 11, 2015

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

Shocking new images of people dicing with death on the region’s rail lines has been released by train operator Greater Anglia in a bid to reduce the number of trespass incidents on the track.

As well as 50 iconic cars, Heveningham Hall will play host to an array of vintage aircraft for the first time this year.

Hosted on May 10 at Foxburrow Farm in Melton near Woodbridge, crowds enjoyed a variety activities and a raffle donated by a variety of local businesses.

Police are appealing for witnesses following a hit and run road traffic collision in Worlington this morning.

A Bavarian-style beer festival has opened its doors at the Grand Marquee at Christchurch Park in Ipswich - showcasing some of the best beers in the world.

The bank holiday weekend is here and it’s set to be a warm one, but there’s still a chance you might have to swap your bikini or Bermudas for a brollie.

Paramedics Sarah Ford and Emma-Louise Bowen Hillson were behind the ambulance launch and hope it will inspire other women.

Most read

Eating Out in the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Eating Out
supplement

View

Visit the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Visit the Broads
supplement

View

Most commented

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24