Belle Vue plans on display as submission date looms

 An artist’s impression of how the entrance to Belle Vue Park could look

An artist’s impression of how the entrance to Belle Vue Park could look - Credit: Babergh District Council

A planning application for the Sudbury Belle Vue Park entrance revamp is due to be submitted before Christmas – with people urged to have their say now on the proposals.

Display boards with more details of the park entrance plans – which propose a cafe, toilets, picnic space and under-5s play area – are on display in the park until Saturday, with an online feedback form available until November 1.

Those views will then be collated to help inform the planning application, due to be submitted before Christmas but possibly as soon as the end of November.

Babergh District Council’s Conservative cabinet member for economic growth, Michael Holt, said: “It’s quite an exciting time for the park – there is an opportunity here to be refreshed and be more welcoming to visitors, improved access, toilets, and it is very important to get the feedback from the public on these concept ideas to make sure that what we do is right for the majority.

“This is a great opportunity for people to have that say, give their voices and put their views forward. I hope they will see from what we are going to be displaying that our commitment is there to make the park a wonderful experience for people. I hope they buy into that and help us create that experience.”

Staff will be on hand to chat through the display boards, open until 3pm today, and again from 10am-2pm on Saturday, October 16.
The boards and plans will then be put into the window of the old Fanboo salon in Unit 12 of the Borehamgate Arcade until November 1 for people to continue viewing the plans.

The council said that the engagement is also looking at the wider masterplan of the site.

In March, the council’s Conservative/Independent/Liberal Democrat coalition cabinet decided to accept a bid for part of the former swimming pool site to be converted to retirement homes by Churchill Retirement Living, while the empty Belle Vue House will become private housing.

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Documents emerged last month that the council had bid for Government grants for retirement homes there as far back as November last year.

Belle Vue Action Group and opposition Green councillors said that showed the retirement living plans had already been decided, but the council has denied that was the case.

Outstanding concerns also remain about whether bidders to develop the former swimming pool site should have been required to fund the park entrance works.

The council’s cabinet has agreed to use the £1.12million from the sale of the house to Churchill to fund the park entrance works, but that still requires full council sign-off after councillors voted against it in July.

Churchill’s pre-application consultation is open online now for locals to have their say.

To complete a feedback form and find out more about the Belle Vue Park entrance plans, visit the council’s website at www.babergh.gov.uk/business/economic-development/regeneration-areas-in-babergh/belle-vue-park-improvements/

For more on the Churchill pre-application consultation, visit www.consultwithyou.co.uk/churchill/sudbury