Seafront homes rejection challenged
DEVELOPERS are poised to appeal against a decision to refuse planning permission to build more than 200 homes at an East Anglian resort.Suffolk Coastal District Council rejected the south seafront scheme for Felixstowe, which would see the transformation of 17.
By Danielle Nuttall
DEVELOPERS are poised to appeal against a decision to refuse planning permission to build more than 200 homes at an East Anglian resort.
Suffolk Coastal District Council rejected the south seafront scheme for Felixstowe, which would see the transformation of 17.5 acres of derelict land into a public park with an amphitheatre surrounded by 209 homes.
The developer, J S Bloor Sudbury Ltd, is now seeking an appeal against the move and the council is expected to make a decision on whether it is granted at the end of the week.
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The multimillion-pound scheme concerns land between Orford Road, Langer Road and Manor Terrace and will include parking for residents and 249 spaces for cars belonging to members of the public.
Residents wrote 121 letters of objection to the proposals and there were also 129 written protests from visitors, tourists, environmentalists and leisure users.
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Just two people expressed their support for the scheme in a letter.
English Heritage said the plans did not conform to national policies, structure plan policy, local plan policies and the council's historic characterisation study and urged the council to reject the plans.
The organisation also warned that the unique setting of the martello tower, one of five built in 1808 to safeguard Felixstowe against the threat of Napoleonic invasion, would be spoilt by building five-storey homes.
Richard Ward, director of the Suffolk Preservation Society, said a "radical rethink" was now needed in relation to any development on the site.
"Commitments need to be made to retain the Herman de Stern building and to deal with the Martello Tower and its setting sympathetically and with imagination," he said in a letter to the district council.
"The economics of the scheme must not be so reliant on large amounts of housing."
The National Coastwatch Institution, which operates from the tower, warned the new houses could block the field of view by up to 30%.