Hundreds of new homes approved for rural village
- Credit: Google Earth
Hundreds of homes, which will triple the amount of the existing housing, have been approved for Barham with space for a new primary school and expansion of the GP surgery.
The planning application for 269 dwellings was approved at a Mid Suffolk District Council Planning Referrals Committee meeting, held on Wednesday, January 27.
Developers Pigeon Investment Management Ltd first submitted a proposal for 300 homes in 2017 for the land to the north west of Church Lane in Barham. However, those plans were rejected in 2018.
During the meeting several councillors, and planning officer Jo Hobbs, agreed the developers had made a commendable effort to mitigate concerns about ecology, landscape, archaeology and highways issues. Barham currently has approximately 650 homes.
Many said during the debate that they were hard pressed to find a valid reason to reject the latest plans, despite the fact current residents might not like the idea of so many new homes in the area.
Within the 269 dwellings are 94 affordable homes, 67 affordable rental properties, eight two-bedroom bungalows and 27 shared ownership properties.
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Part of the site has been secured for a primary school and pre-school, a section of land has been gifted to expand the village church car park, growth of the existing GP surgery or for community use.
Kathie Guthrie, chair of Mid Suffolk District Council’s Planning Referrals Committee, said: “An application of this size is never decided on lightly. However, after much deliberation the committee agreed the benefits of the proposals outweigh potential harm, provided that the applicant agrees to the additional conditions sought by our council.
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“The development will bring a substantial amount of affordable homes in a sustainable location, allowing local people to stay local.
"It will also provide much-needed community facilities – future proofing against expected population growth, and supporting the council’s commitment to ensuring bright and healthy futures for our thriving communities.”
Another application for 73 new homes in Claydon was also discussed at the meeting, having been first submitted in 2018 by Scott Property Group.
However, despite being recommended for approval, the council were minded to refuse on grounds of density.