500 new jobs set for Suffolk

A MULTI-MILLION pound investment could see hundreds of new jobs created in Sudbury, providing a massive boost to the town's economy.

Jonathan Schofield

A MULTI-MILLION pound investment could see hundreds of new jobs created in Sudbury, providing a massive boost to the town's economy.

Prolog, based on the Chilton Road Industrial estate, is proposing to move its headquarters to a new �50 million, 26,000 sq metre site in Churchfield Road, Chilton.

If approved the company said it would mean the creation of 500 new jobs. Alongside Prolog's existing employees this would mean a work force of 800.

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Following a bleak year which has seen job losses as major retailers pulled out of the town, business leaders have welcomed the news.

Peter Tyrer , director of promotions and logistics at Prolog, said: “Our ambition is to keep our business in Sudbury and to provide jobs for the people of this town. From our point of view this is a huge investment to make but we feel confident this is the right place and time to show our commitment and optimism for the future.

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“The economy has touched rock bottom in terms of the recession and although there is a long way to go we are coming out of the worst and our business here at Prolog is clearly in a position to expand as the economy improves. On top of the 500 extra jobs there could be up to 150 part-time positions created.”

The company provides services to a wide range of industries from mail order companies, retailers and government departments to storage, retail logistics and call centre services.

Mr Tyrer said an application made for a similar development on the site was overturned by judicial review three years ago but he was confident the new proposal would be supported by Babergh District Council.

John McMillan, chairman of the Sudbury Chamber of Commerce, said the news was “fantastic” for Sudbury.

“We would have no reservations in supporting such a massive boost to the town. Not only for the jobs Prolog are creating but for the benefits all these working people will bring to the rest of the town. This is absolutely fantastic news,” he added.

Peter Clifford, chairman of Chilton Parish Council, said the scale of the proposal was good news for the town and the entire county but he voiced some warnings over the impact of such a development.

He said: “The development is very close to St Mary's Church in Chilton which is a grade one listed building. The roof of the new buildings will only be a metre and a half lower than the church roof while the site will come very close to the moat around Chilton Hall.

“Clearly we have to balance this impact with the need for jobs but I'm sure there will be people living nearby who will be very disappointed if this gets through.”

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