Planning row shock for residents of new Persimmon estate at Framlingham
PUBLISHED: 17:45 05 September 2018 | UPDATED: 17:45 05 September 2018
Residents of a new housing estate in Framlingham have been left stunned after getting letters from the local council warning them that their homes don’t have full planning permission.
The 95 properties being built by Persimmon Homes on Mount Pleasant had been granted planning permission in January 2016, but there were applications for amendments lodged with Suffolk Coastal council in August last year – and these were never approved.
Now residents have been sent letters by the council warning them of the problems with the site.
A planning meeting of the council is to be held on September 20 which will recommend that councillors visit the site before deciding what to do about the planning issue.
The letter, from planning manager Katherine Scott, says: “Whilst the principle of 95 dwellings on this site has planning permission, the precise layout and detailed external appearance of the buildings are not yet authorised.
“I appreciate that this may come as an unpleasant surprise for those who have moved into the properties within or adjacent to the site since the applications were submitted last summer.”
She said the problem should have shown up on local searches by the purchasers solicitors – and says if residents had not been informed they should take up the issue with their solicitors.
A spokesman for the council said the letters were sent because there had been seven enforcement notices sent to Persimmon during the construction – only one of which had been resolved.
It was not uncommon for councils to have to insist that developers built in accordance with planning permission, but in this case it had been difficult to get Persimmon to take the necessary action.
It is understood the council is not threatening to demand that the existing homes are demolished.
A Persimmon Homes Suffolk spokesperson said: “Full planning permission was granted for the 95 homes at Framlingham. However, we sought to make a number of minor amendments to the external appearance of some properties and elements of the site layout, and the owners of the properties affected have been contacted to explain the alterations that would be required.
“Persimmon Homes will continue to work with Suffolk Coastal District Council and we anticipate the variation of condition applications that were submitted in August 2017 will be taken to planning committee in October 2018.
“Any residents with concerns are welcome to speak directly to our Planning Department on 01473 927400.”
Mixed views from Mount Pleasant residents
One resident at Mount Pleasant described the situation with the homes as “a complete disaster.”
She said: “I’ve been living here since last November and there have been several problems with this as the latest – now this has come through and we don’t know what is happening.”
However not all residents are so worried. Dick Williamson, who moved in last December, said he was happy with the plans and felt the letter was a bureaucratic issue between the council and Persimmon.
He said: “So far as I am concerned I bought the house after seeing the plans and the houses that are being built are the same as those in the plans – I don’t see what the issue is.”
Central Suffolk MP Dr Dan Poulter was very concerned about the issue and was trying to help the residents. He said: “I am making urgent enquiries of both the developers, Persimmon Homes Ltd, and Suffolk Coastal District Council.”