Felixstowe: Caravan parks and school land is put forward for homes

Felixstowe Beach holiday park - the site has been suggested for homes.

Felixstowe Beach holiday park - the site has been suggested for homes. - Credit: Archant

Sites for more than 1,500 homes have been suggested in Felixstowe after district planning officers asked community leaders where they think new housing should be built.

Felixstowe Town Council chose not to suggest any fresh sites for extra housing at the resort, but neighbours Trimley St Martin Parish Council have put forward five sites in the seaside town.

The parish council says all the sites are brownfield and it is trying to avoid the designation of farmland with its vital food production role.

Parish councillors suggested the former Deben High School site, which will be vacant when the new Felixstowe Academy building is ready, could have 188 homes, development of Peewit and Felixstowe Beach caravan parks could create 500, and use of Suffolk Sands holiday park a further 326.

It is also suggested the former Orwell High site could add a further 537 homes, but it is unclear how much land will be left after the academy opens.

While the sites are in active use, the parish council says this is no reason to exclude them.

The caravan parks were previously rejected by Suffolk Coastal District Council because of flooding risk. However, parish councillors feel the risk can be overcome. On the low-lying south seafront site building was permitted with homes raised above the flood level via steps to the ground floor.

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The parish council said: “Their whole or even partial inclusion would reduce the need to permanently destroy food-producing agricultural/brownfield land.”

Suffolk Coastal said it was not consulting on sites, but offering people the opportunity to put sites to the council for consideration as part of the new Local Plan.

There would be consultation once preferred sites are identified.

The district council was inviting “individuals, groups and organisations, whether as landowners, agents or potential developers, to put forward sites that you think should be considered for their future development potential as part of this exercise.

“These sites might have the potential to contribute towards the district’s housing needs in either the short-term or longer-term.”