Former community facility to make way for homes

Saxmundham Fromus Centre plans

An indicative CGI image of the former Fromus Centre redevelopment in Saxmundham for 12 supported living homes and 19 open market properties - Credit: Rees Pryer Architects

Plans have been unveiled to redevelop a former community facility site in Saxmundham into homes – including supported living for vulnerable adults.

The former Fromus Centre, in Seaman Avenue, has been empty since November 2021, after the Saxmundham and District Community Interest Company moved into a new facility in the town centre.

The land is owned by Suffolk County Council, which has now unveiled pre-application plans for a tie-up with Orwell Housing Association to build 12 one-bedroom homes – bungalows and flats – for vulnerable adults and those with learning difficulties.

Early designs for the old Fromus Centre site in Saxmundham

Early designs for the old Fromus Centre site in Saxmundham - Credit: Rees Pryer Architects

It will also include offices, staff accommodation, parking and private and communal gardens.

In addition, another 19 open market homes will be built, 30% designated as affordable.

A pre-application consultation has recently concluded, with feedback now being assessed before a formal planning application is submitted.

The council’s consultation document said: “The existing building on the site, the old Fromus Centre, is no longer fit for use and requires demolition. The proposed redevelopment of this site includes the demolition of the existing building.

Most Read

“All comments received will be recorded and analysed. Once the comments have been taken into consideration the proposals will be finalised and all the supporting information that will need to be submitted with a planning application will be prepared.

“It is anticipated that a planning application will be submitted in April 2022 and anyone wishing to comment will be able to do so to the council on the application in due course.”

The council confirmed that it plans to secure outline planning permission for the 19 open market homes before selling the land to a developer, and stressed that the community garden at the south of the site will remain.

A spokeswoman from Orwell Housing Association said: “Orwell are really pleased to be building on our relationship with Suffolk County Council and working in partnership with them on redevelopment proposals for the old Fromus Centre site.

“The mix of supported living, private and affordable housing, as well as continuing to accommodate the existing community garden, means the redevelopment will have significant positive benefits for different groups of people.”