New children's home approved despite neighbours' fears over parking

41 Knight Road, Rendlesham, which Loyal Care Ltd wants to turn into a children's home

The property in Rendlesham which is to be converted into a children's home - Credit: Contributed

Proposals to open a children's home in a residential house have been given the green light - despite fears over "tight" parking and the level of traffic.

Catalin Condurat, owner and director of Loyal Care Ltd, applied to East Suffolk Council to change the use of a property in Knight Road.

Mr Condurat, whose firm has a registered address in High Street, Leiston, had said the home would provide accommodation for five children who have suffered trauma or other forms of hardship. 

According to Land Registry deeds, the house belongs to former conman Darren Palmer - but he has denied having any involvement in the conversion project.

Planning documents had proposed that staff members' cars would park in the home's double garage and in a line on the driveway.

Rendlesham Parish Council had objected to the proposals - highlighting that community leaders did not believe the primarily residential Knight Road was "not an appropriate location" for the home.

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In an East Suffolk planning committee meeting held on Tuesday, councillor David Moore raised concerns over what the council deemed would be an "unacceptable" number of traffic movements to and from the house on a daily basis.

He said: "Each time a car needs to go, then the others need to be moved out of the way."

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Neighbour Susan Ansdell told the meeting: "There will be no day without a break in the amount of traffic and noise.

"There appears to be no illustration as to how the parking will work in the shift handovers."

Mr Condurat responded by arguing there is a "huge lack of provision for children in need throughout the country" and highlighted how the highways authority had not raised any concerns over the project.

East Suffolk planning officer Rachel Smith told the committee: "It is tight in terms of the number of spaces and the parking and turning space available. 

"However, it is not considered that it would be refusable as part of the application.

"On balance, the use of the site is still as residential. The use would intensify slightly - however, on balance, it's considered that the principle use of the site is acceptable."

The committee approved a prior recommendation to give the project the go-ahead.

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