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Luxury house to be pulled down for homes

PUBLISHED: 05:10 29 January 2003 | UPDATED: 16:13 24 February 2010

A LUXURY house built less than 30 years ago may be demolished to make way for eleven new homes - if village opposition is overcome.

The modern brick and tile house, St Brelades , at Yaxley, near Eye, was built in 1976 by wealthy businessman Roy Humphrey and, in subsequent years, an indoor swimming pool extension and triple garage were added.

A LUXURY house built less than 30 years ago may be demolished to make way for eleven new homes - if village opposition is overcome.

The modern brick and tile house, St Brelades , at Yaxley, near Eye, was built in 1976 by wealthy businessman Roy Humphrey and, in subsequent years, an indoor swimming pool extension and triple garage were added.

Mr Humphrey last year sold the property - previously on the market for more than £350,000 - to Terry Lucas who owns the development company behind an estate of 32 new homes on adjacent land.

Now plans have been submitted for the demolition of St Brelades and the building of eleven houses on the site.

But the parish council and more than 100 local residents have registered their opposition to the proposals, claiming the new homes will lead to further congestion at a "dangerous" junction and over-load the sewage system.

Opponents also say the village school is full and that children of the new occupants will have to travel to schools elsewhere.

However, Mr Lucas has pointed to Government planning advice which urges the building of high density homes on previously developed or "brownfield" sites – to help ease pressure on the countryside.

"People have to have somewhere to live. At present there is only one family living on the site – my own. If these plans go ahead there will be eleven families," he said.

His agent, Gordon Terry, said space for local children could be made at the village school by declining applications from other parishes, currently contributing 50% of pupils.

The county council had raised no objection on traffic grounds and, according to Anglian Water, additional flows of sewage would not be significant, Mr Terry said.

But Keith Pawsey, chairman of Yaxley Parish Council, said: "It would be a very dense development in the heart of the village and totally out of character."

Local families had already been turned away from the village school because there was no room and further development would only exacerbate the problem.

Some properties in the lower part of the village already suffered as a result of over-loading of the sewage system, Mr Pawsey said.

Jayne Hinds, who lives next door to St Brelades and runs the village post office, said traffic was already bad at the nearby junction at certain times of the day, some vehicles using Yaxley as a "rat run" between the A140 and the A143 roads.

"It would be very dangerous to build these homes on such a busy junction. The plans show each home would have only one garage space. This will lead to cars being parked on the street and delivery vehicles will add to the congestion," she said.

Mrs Hinds said a further major increase in population was unlikely to help secure the future of the post office.

"New developments like this are generally occupied by people who work elsewhere. None of these proposed new homes are earmarked for the elderly – people who do use village post offices," she added.

Pensioners, Wyn and Jack Brown, who live in a bungalow opposite the site, yesterday visited the offices of Mid Suffolk District Council to deliver nearly 100 letters of objection – to add to more than 20 already posted.

The council's area planning committee is due to consider the plans on February 3.

david.green@eadt.co.uk

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