Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 18°C

min temp: 13°C

Search

Felixstowe: Objectors claim Suffolk Coastal District Council was biased over £2.6m JD Wetherspoon pub plan

PUBLISHED: 06:43 28 August 2014 | UPDATED: 09:52 22 December 2015

A JD Wetherspoon pub. Photo: Tim Ireland/PA Wire

A JD Wetherspoon pub. Photo: Tim Ireland/PA Wire

A council has been accused of bias in the way it handled proposals for a £2.6million new pub and restaurant in a seaside town.

It has been alleged that Suffolk Coastal gave more weight to a few letters supporting the JD Wetherspoon development than it did to dozens of objections urging the authority to reject the application.

Councillors approved the project to replace the old Central Surgery in Felixstowe in line with officers’ recommendations.

Gareth Lomax, whose home in High Road West is opposite the site, has written to the council’s monitoring officer Hilary Slater to lodge a formal objection.

Mr Lomax claimed the council’s planning officers had been “at best unhelpful and at worst obstructive” during the planning process, and he felt the decision in favour of development had been “railroaded”.

He said the council’s website recorded 59 objections and only one supporting comment from all comments received.

However, 38 days after the consultation notice had expired, the planning department posted another supporting comment.

He said: “The planning officer in charge highlighted this particular document during the hearing, mentioning the reasons for the support from the member of the public.

“In my opinion, the planning officer demonstrated clear bias towards this application, particularly as we are aware of objections being held back while supporting comments (both of them!) were championed.”

A spokesman for Suffolk Coastal said the council took all complaints very seriously. He said: “All officers work to the council’s customer service standards and we will respond, if we do not meet those targets.

“All of our councillors have agreed to observe the Suffolk Code of Conduct, which lays out how they should conduct themselves.”

Complaints are dealt with by the council’s monitoring officer and an independent person appointed by the council, who will decide what further action, if any, should be taken.

Complainants are fully updated on the progress and outcome of their complaint.

The remains of an outdoor classroom set alight in Ipswich’s Christchurch Park have again been hit by fire.

Birch Farm Nursery in Hintlesham, which was given an ‘inadequate’ Ofsted in December, has made significant progress to gain the requires improvement rating on its re-inspection last month.

A 51-year-old benefit cheat who was overpaid £26,000 has been sentenced to a six month supervision order.

Kesgrave Town Council has laid on an event to help older people who struggle to get out or experience loneliness.

Skilled inmates at a Suffolk open prison should be put to use repairing the building, a report suggests.

Here’s a roof top view taken across busy Fore hamlet in Ipswich as the sun goes down.

Parish councillors in a west Suffolk village have recommended controversial plans for 100 homes be refused amid infrastructure concerns.

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

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24