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Woodbridge/Martlesham: Plans for 250 homes to be built near east Suffolk beauty spot

PUBLISHED: 14:38 08 August 2014 | UPDATED: 14:38 08 August 2014

Woodbridge mayor and district councillor Geoff Holdcroft

Woodbridge mayor and district councillor Geoff Holdcroft

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Plans have been drawn for up to 250 homes to be built near an east Suffolk beauty spot.

Gladman Developments has begun a public consultation on its proposals for Duke’s Park in Woodbridge, which comprise a mixture of market value and affordable housing, a small convenience store and a children’s play area. The developer claims the site offers the “logical extension” of the town to the south, while helping to satisfy the “increasing need” for housing in the district.

Woodbridge mayor and district councillor Geoff Holdcroft, however, has condemned the proposals, which he says offer “absolutely no merit whatsoever”.

In an open letter to the company, Mr Holdcroft labelled the proposals “unwelcome and undeliverable”.

Although he accepts the proposals for new homes and affordable housing would be “most welcome” in other locations, he said the countryside setting proposed for this development contravened local policy.

Mr Holdcroft, who is responsible for planning at Suffolk Coastal District Council, stressed he was commenting in his capacity as the ward’s local member.

The 13-hectare site lies to the south of Woodbridge, near Martlesham Creek, and the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Mr Holdcroft said such a location was unsuitable as it fell outside the physical limits, contrary to planning policy, and also posed environmental concerns.

“Given all these matters, I think that the proposal has absolutely no merit whatsoever and I will be opposing it personally and also on behalf of the many residents of my ward that have already contacted me,” he said.

In a separate letter, Mr Holdcroft highlighted further issues with developing on a site which falls on the chosen cable route for the East Anglia One Offshore Windfarm, which, he says, prevents the construction of any buildings.

While acknowledging the cable route, Gladman Developments said it been taken into consideration when drawing up the proposal.

An application for the proposal is expected to be submitted this summer.

Fire crews from across west Suffolk are tackling a blaze at a scrap yard in Red Lodge this morning.

A Suffolk mother left devastated when a drink driver killed her son but was given just five years in jail is backing plans to lock up careless motorists for life.

Developers behind plans to build a 300-home estate in land off Bell Lane, Kesgrave, have expressed their disappointment at the Planning Inspectorate’s decision after it dismissed an appeal to let the build go ahead.

Only 18% of low-paid workers in the East of England managed to move on to better jobs in the last decade, new figures have revealed.

Honorary graduates recognised for their achievements in writing novels and supporting higher education joined graduates from the University of Suffolk yesterday – and despite coming from different disciplines revealed how much the county means to them.

Applications by students to study nursing at the University of Suffolk have dropped by 17% since the Government abolished NHS bursaries, new figures reveal.

Firefighters were called to a crash in a Suffolk village tonight as there were fears someone may have been trapped in a vehicle.

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