Decision made on 80 homes for Stowupland
- Credit: Archant
Plans to develop 80 homes on agricultural land in Stowupland have been narrowly approved – despite warnings they go against what the village wants.
Gladman Developments Ltd submitted the bid in April to construct 80 homes on land south of Gipping Road, just weeks after it had a scheme for 70 homes on the same plot of land rejected.
But at Mid Suffolk District Council’s planning referrals committee on Wednesday afternoon, the latest proposals were approved by eight votes to seven after a lengthy three-and-a-half hour debate.
Stuart Carvel from Gladman said: “Following the committee’s decision to refuse the first application in January we carefully considered those reasons for refusal and have sought to bring back to the committee addressing your concerns through this new planning application.
MORE: Fresh bid for homes on Stowupland site previously rejected“The scheme is in a sustainable location identified in the council’s A14 growth corridor with close access to facilities in Stowmarket, including the mainline railway station.”
He added that it “improves connectivity for the benefit of all the residents of Stowupland”.
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The site is directly next to a development by Bloor Homes, where 194 homes are under construction.
The land is allocated for residential development in the emerging local plan which is not due to be adopted until late 2021 or early 2022, but it is not deemed suitable land for development in the village’s neighbourhood plan – developed by the parish council in consultation with the village – which was adopted in June last year.
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Ward councillor Rachel Eburne said: “The edge of this village should be the landscape we are currently looking at, which is a rural landscape that is not special in the official definition of the word but is special to the residents of Stowupland and it is a very valuable landscape.
“It’s a village of approximately 600 homes so already approved is a significant number which will be more than half again.”
Keith Welham, ward councillor and parish councillor, added: “The parish council are totally against allowing this development.
“It is clear that the social, road safety and the environmental disbenefits outweigh any economic benefit.”
The plans include proposals for a pedestrian crossing, although there was some concern about how feasible that was for the homes opposite, as well as £50,000 for junction improvements to the B1115 and A1120.
Some committee members felt that going against the neighbourhood plan would set a bad precedent, and the crossing plans were not in a position to be approved but others said that the proposal addressed the previous reasons for refusal and the highways improvements were much needed, as well as the homes being of a good design and standard.