Parish council going to high court over building of new nursery
- Credit: Archant
A parish council is preparing to take its case against the construction of a new nursery to the high courts.
Assington Parish Council opposes the construction of new premises for the Yorley Barn Nursery School on a greenfield site close to the A134.
Yorley Barn said it wanted to “add to the community” after it was asked to leave its current site in Little Cornard, but the council argues that its intended location along the A134 is not appropriate.
Babergh District Council approved the construction of the site in November, having been initially recommended to refuse the application because it went against the its development plan.
Councillors decided that the loss of views was outweighed by need for educational provision and the need to keep the nursery in the local area.
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Assington Parish Council disagreed with the outcome of the meeting and has sought a judicial review of the plans.
Ian Jordan, from the council, has also set up a petition to show the strength of feeling against the proposals to Babergh District Council. So far it has attracted 240 signatures.
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Mr Jordan said the council had also spent a long time working on its neighbourhood plan and understood what people in the village wanted.
“One of the things that was acknowledged was the importance which residents attached to the rural location of the village,” said Mr Jordan.
Views in and around the village, particularly near the church, were also highly valued.
“None of us have objections to the nursery,” said Mr Jordan.
“We believe the location is the wrong location.”
Mr Jordan said that the council had proposed a number of other locations which it deemed more suitable.
He said the parish council had never been formally approached by the nursery.
Donna-Marie Page, director of Yorley Barn, said she was "devastated" that the council had decided to fight the decision and called on local people look at the facts before making judgements about the nursery on social media.
"Yorley Barn Nursery School obtained full planning permission through the correct extensive process and all views were heard during the lengthy and thorough planning meeting," said Mrs Page.
"Contrary to popular belief, we did contact Assington Parish Council prior to our planning application being submitted to ask if they knew of any premises or land available but were met with a ‘sorry we can’t help’.
"We had also looked at a small number of alternatives. Those suggested by Assington Parish Council since us gaining planning permission and some others we found ourselves however, the site at Assington is by far the best option for many reasons and Barbergh District Council have and continue to support the application.
"We intend to add to the community of Assington not to detract from it, our builders and building will be respectful to our surroundings and we are hopeful that this issue can be resolved as soon as possible so that we can continue to bring exceptionally high-quality early years education to local children and families."