New estate given final go ahead despite ‘nearly unanimous’ objections from villagers

Plans for a 42-home estate off Main Road in Somersham, near Ipswich, have been given the go ahead. P

Plans for a 42-home estate off Main Road in Somersham, near Ipswich, have been given the go ahead. Picture: GOOGLE MAPS - Credit: Archant

A new 42-home estate which received “nearly unanimous” objections from villagers has been given the final go ahead.

The plans to build 42 homes on land south west of Main Road, in Somersham, were granted full permission by Mid Suffolk District Council planning officers.

Approval was given for the final designs, which were due to be heard by the council’s planning committee before meetings were cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak, under delegated powers given to officers.

Developer Hopkins and Moore said the homes will provide a “subtle mix of styles and features” commonly found within this part of Suffolk.

It also said the estate will provide an “excellent response” to the need for further housing.

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However, Somersham Parish Council strongly objected to the plans.

Its response to the application listed road access, increase in traffic and the protection of heritage sites as people’s main concerns - and those views were “nearly unanimous” amongst those in their community.

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The statement signed by parish clerk Rod Caird said: “There are serious problems of access to and from the site and Main Road.

“Increased traffic in these circumstances causes unnecessary danger to drivers, pedestrians and cyclists.

“The close proximity of the site to Grade Two listed buildings - the Duke of Marlborough Public House and Kings Cottage, Lower Somersham Post Office, Street Farm - is incompatible with the setting and outlook of those properties and therefore directly conflicts with an essential element of the heritage listings.

“The parish council is also reflecting the near-unanimous view of residents, expressed at a special meeting in June and in frequent messages and conversations, that the above planning problems should lead directly to refusal of the application.”

A range of one, two, three and four-bedroom homes will be built on the land, as well as garages and on-road car parking.

There will also be an area of public open space, which Hopkins and Moore said is an “integral” part of the scheme.

The homes were given outline permission in November 2019 and a number of conditions have now been agreed by the developers and the council which means construction can now begin.

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