Bildeston joinery given green light to expand - creating additional jobs

New jobs for Bildeston

New jobs for Bildeston

A specialist joinery firm which employs 123 people at its Suffolk warehouse has been given the go-ahead to expand, despite the concerns of some villagers and councillors.

By a margin of just two votes, Babergh’s planning committee backed a proposal by Taylor Made Joinery to build a new warehouse and extend its current premises on the south side of Ipswich Road.

The expansion, which will also include a new car park, is expected to eventually lead to the creation of 12 additional jobs.

At a planning meeting in Hadleigh on Tuesday, Bildeston parish councillor Ashley Hubbard spoke against the proposal claiming it showed “no consideration” for the impact it could have on neighbouring residential properties in Manor Road.

The main concern among committee members was that the extension would bring the industrial area closer to homes and there was not enough screening to reduce the visual and noise impact.

There is a strip of trees separating the site and the houses but some councillors felt this was not enough and suggested a 2.5metre fence should be erected around the entire perimeter.

However, planning chief Christine Thurlow described the request as “unreasonable” claiming it would be a “significant investment” especially in light of the fact that environmental protection officers had never requested an acoustic barrier.

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A temporary car park will be created while construction work is carried out and this concerned several members because the entrance is on “a very busy and dangerous road”, according to councillor David Busby.

He suggested the new permanent car park should be built before the warehouse and extension to alleviate the problem.

But Mrs Thurlow said the development was an expansion of an existing employment site and unless it had an adverse impact in relation to residential and environmental amenities, or highways issues then the scheme should be accepted as proposed by the applicant. “What we have here is a successful firm that wishes to expand and we have no-one here on the technical side objecting,” she added.

Speaking on the company’s behalf, architect Mark Wincer described Taylor Made Joinery as “Babergh District Council’s success story” and said it was now one of the top three joinery firms in the UK.

The new warehouse space was required for finished goods, he said, adding: “The proposal is vital to the ongoing success of Taylor Made Joinery.”

The proposal was carried by eight votes to six.