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Fight against ‘ridiculous’ plan for 144 homes in Constable Country ‘gathering momentum’ as 100 protest signs put up

PUBLISHED: 09:00 14 July 2015

Action East Bergholt is campaigning against the proposed development of 144 homes in East Bergholt.

Action East Bergholt is campaigning against the proposed development of 144 homes in East Bergholt.

Campaigners opposed to proposals to build almost 150 homes in the Suffolk countryside immortalised by John Constable believe their fight is “gathering momentum”.

Action East Bergholt is campaigning against the proposed development of 144 homes in East Bergholt. Action East Bergholt is campaigning against the proposed development of 144 homes in East Bergholt.

Around 100 objection placards have been put up around East Bergholt in protest to the proposed development, which would bring a mix of 50 affordable homes and 94 town houses and apartments to the outskirts of the village where the landscape painter was born and raised.

Peter Dent, chairman of Action East Bergholt, said in January the campaign group is determined to protect the artist’s legacy.

Since then, he said opposition has grown. Earlier this month, more than 300 people “packed out” a village meeting – one of the biggest attended in living memory, Mr Dent said.

He said: “The unprecedented scale and inappropriateness of what is being attempted has stirred our community into action. We will not allow the tranquil images so famously depicted by Constable to be permanently destroyed.

Peter Dent, chairman of Action East Bergholt, who is campaigning against the proposed building of 144 new homes in the village Peter Dent, chairman of Action East Bergholt, who is campaigning against the proposed building of 144 new homes in the village

“We have already seen a great deal of support from within the village from residents who have offered their overwhelming support to our ‘no’ campaign. If you had asked me what our chances were a few months ago, I would have probably said ‘not great’. Now, we are gathering momentum.

“We hope that the strength of this feeling will prompt Babergh District Council to realise that not only is it wholly unacceptable to our community if this irresponsible plan for 144 houses gets approval, but that they also have a responsibility to preserve some of the most iconic, traditional landscapes in British history.”

The housing estate, which would increase the number of homes in the village by around 20%, would be built on a site off the B1070 – adjacent to Moores Lane. Around 2,250 people currently live in East Bergholt.

Mr Dent added: “We are not against development. Villages need new homes, but not in that place and not at that magnitude. It is ridiculous.”

A Babergh District Council spokesman said: “Babergh can confirm it has received a planning application for 144 new homes in East Bergholt.

“This application will be considered in line with planning guidelines and any representations from members of the public on the proposal can be submitted to us.

“The application will be heard by Babergh’s planning committee in due course.”

The two developers involved – Bidwells and Knight Developments – both declined to comment.

4 comments

  • I agree strongly with jon123. The housing situation is a great injustice. But the Tories are "throwing the baby out with the bathwater", AGAIN, with these new planning policies. Political philosophy apart, they are so INEPT. It really shouldn't be necessary to destroy the nation's cultural heritage like this, but of course, Cash is King. Dirty or not.

    Report this comment

    catharthis

    Tuesday, July 14, 2015

  • I live in Ipswich so am certainly not a nimby, and I quite enjoy visiting unspoilt countryside.

    Report this comment

    Captain Slog

    Tuesday, July 14, 2015

  • Nimbyism. Sheer nimbyism. That said I do have some sympathy because we really need to use old industrial land before building on plots such as this. Now the Tories are in power again I doubt any local action will stop the building of these new homes.

    Report this comment

    Red Robbo

    Tuesday, July 14, 2015

  • yea its ok for all these people who have nice homes to live in and most likey lived in times when you got paid a wage when houses was not so over priced they could buy one but i bet if they where homeless and been told since 1986 sorry we dont have any empty places for you to live in they would not be so stuck up about it!! times have changed we need more houses get over it and start bloody building the homes so that people can afford to live a normal life .. the same as all you people who have a home! stop being selfish just so you have a bloody field to look at!!

    Report this comment

    jon123

    Tuesday, July 14, 2015

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

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