Rural jobs hope for Bury village

NEARLY 150 rural jobs will be created if plans for a former fruit packing firm go through, developers claim.The former Rebvale fruit packing site on the south-western side of Risby, near Bury St Edmuynds, was destroyed by fire in 2001.

Laurence Cawley

NEARLY 150 rural jobs will be created if plans for a former fruit packing firm go through, developers claim.

The former Rebvale fruit packing site on the south-western side of Risby, near Bury St Edmuynds, was destroyed by fire in 2001.

Norwich-based J and R Builders now want to put up 30 business units housed in seven blocks, a three-bedroom house for the site manager and refurbish an existing agricultural building on the 3.14 hectare plot.

The developer claims its plans would create 144 new jobs in the area. The proposals come just two weeks after Moy Park poultry factory in Bury announced it would be shedding up to 188 jobs in its transfer of operations to a plant in Lincolnshire.

The Risby plans were welcomed last night by Nigel Aitkens, St Edmundsbury Borough Council cabinet member responsible for rural economy issues.

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“I think it is absolutely wonderful. I would welcome the proposal because one of the things we've experienced is the loss of a lot of small business units,” Mr Aitkens said.

“There has been a demand for these types of unit and we want to see as many jobs created as possible and these will have good access to the A14. We have to be mindful of the extra traffic generated but this scheme appears to offer the best of both worlds - new rural jobs and the convenience of the A14.”

The scheme is also supported by Risby Parish Council. Officers at the borough council, which is recommending the scheme's approval, said there was a shortage of commercial land and premises in and around Bury and the situation had been made worse by the recent loss of similar units at the Hardwick Industrial Estate.

However neighbours have objected to the scheme, voicing concerns about privacy, noise and light coming from the new units. They also claim the number of business premises proposed is too much for the village.

The building firm behind the project claims 43 office jobs, 93 business jobs and three site support roles will be created if the scheme gets the nod. If successful, the development will be carried out in a number of phases.

The plan will be considered by the borough council's planning committee on Thursday.

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