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Westleton: Village’s ‘scenic heart’ preserved

PUBLISHED: 18:33 28 July 2014

Mike Page Aerials

Westleton 2009

Mike Page Aerials Westleton 2009

Archant

Housing proposals for the “scenic heart of a scenic village” in east Suffolk have been rejected after meeting opposition.

Councillors and residents in Westleton, near Leiston, made impassioned pleas against the application to build a single storey dwelling overlooking a much-loved pond in the village.

Westleton’s parish chairman, Arlette Smith, told Suffolk Coastal District Council’s north area planning committee meeting the pond was the highlight of a “very special village”, which would be “ruined” by the development.

Meanwhile, resident Peter Hecker said he knew of no one in the village, other than the applicant, who supported the scheme.“It would destroy the tranquil ambience of the village,” he added.

The application was submitted by John Felton-Whitcher, the owner of Westleton House, which is next to the proposed site, and had itself been converted into two homes. He said the proposal would improve the site where there is currently a garage.

Westleton’s district councillor Barry Slater said that while villagers were “realistic” about Mr Felton-Whitcher’s previous plans, they were “not prepared to go along with this attempt to shoehorn in a third dwelling in a very small site – especially here in the very heart of the village”.

Committee members agreed unanimously with the local representatives and rejected the application.

Michael Gower said the development would “massively increase pressure on a very special location”, which committee chairman Debbie McCallum described as the “scenic heart of a scenic village”.

The project architect Bob Davis, speaking after the meeting, said they would be appealing. “At the moment there’s a very ugly garage, as admitted by the council, but they just don’t want to see any change,” he said.

A Suffolk NHS trust has been ranked one of the best of the country, despite experiencing its most challenging winter on record.

Drivers are advised that it is “highly likely” the Orwell Bridge in Suffolk will shut during tomorrow morning’s rush hour amid forecasts of 65mph gusts.

Two teenagers wanted in connection with the attempted murder of a 17-year-old in Colchester are still at large following a “targeted” attack.

A school near Bury St Edmunds is helping to raise funds to support education in Tanzania through a non-uniform day.

A theatre workshop with a difference is making its way to Stowmarket for the first time this year.

He’s a well known television personality, but what’s John Bishop like live? Reviewer ELLIS BARKER headed down to the Regent tonight for the first gig of his three-night stop in Ipswich.

A Suffolk-based charity came together with businesses and individuals in the county to purchase much-needed sensory equipment for a Bury St Edmunds special school.

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