Plans for 19 homes in Suffolk village refused

Land east of Ashfield Road

Land east of Ashfield Road, which was the proposed site for 19 new homes. - Credit: Google Maps

Plans for 19 homes in Elmswell have been refused planning permission.

Developer Hartog Hutton's plans for land east of Ashfield Road were submitted in November 2021 to Mid Suffolk District Council.

The project included six affordable homes, but the council's planning committee refused the application with concerns over the location and the sustainability of the scheme.  

Malcolm Payne, a director of Hartog Hutton, said: "We are very disappointed that the council has refused the application on the grounds they have. The development would have provided six affordable homes for the local community.

"We also find it hard to understand how the council consider the site to be in an unsustainable location when it is surrounded by existing development some recent and is included in the settlement boundary in the new Local Plan and the fact that Elmswell is one of only four settlements in Mid Suffolk that has a railway station and good bus service.

"We went to great lengths with consultants to address all the concerns the planners had during the period of the application and still to get a refusal in this way is disappointing

"Our houses are high-quality bespoke designs based on Suffolk vernacular architecture and provide a level and quality of accommodation not provided by the national housebuilders. The scheme would complement the village."

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The committee report for the project says: "The proposal is in a countryside location where the development of these new dwellings would not materially enhance or maintain the vitality of the rural community.

"Future occupants will, moreover, be likely to be reliant upon the private car to access services, facilities, and employment.

"The District Council has an evidenced supply of land for housing in excess of nine years and has taken steps to boost significantly the supply of homes in sustainable locations.

"The negative visual harm upon the street scene would be significant, and the open character and attendant rural sense of place would be lost, and on this basis, the proposal fails to protect or conserve intrinsic character of the countryside.

"The proposed development would cause less than substantial harm to Grove Farmhouse a Grade II Listed Building and its appreciation and the setting of Buttonhaugh Green."