Chilton Woods home decision deferred again after legal challenge issued by parish council

Part fo the site that was earmarked for the new Chilton Woods development near Sudbury. Picture: EMM

Part fo the site that was earmarked for the new Chilton Woods development near Sudbury. Picture: EMMA BRENNAN - Credit: Archant

Plans for a controversial development in Sudbury have been delayed again after a legal challenge from objectors alleged that planning policies had been breached.

Babergh District Council’s planning committee this morning met to discuss the 130-home scheme by Catesby Estates Ltd as part of the Chilton Woods development.

The matter – which had already been delayed by a week after the original planning committee meeting was postponed – was wrapped up just 15 minutes in after it had emerged a letter from Chilton Parish Council’s lawyers was received by Babergh on Tuesday citing policy breaches.

The matter has been deferred to allow Babergh’s legal team and planning officers to investigate the allegations, with the committee hoping the application will return at the end of the month for a decision.

Committee chairman Peter Beer said: “This decision was not taken lightly.

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“We are very disappointed we couldn’t get it sorted but under the circumstances we need to be correct and make sure all the facts and legal advice were being given.

“It’s in everybody’s interests to get this right – there’s a lot of people that could be affected by this.”

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The letter submitted by Town Legal on behalf of Chilton Parish Council alleged that there were “a series of clear breaches” to the local plan, as the development was “piecemeal” in its approach, no community woodland was retained and that a single access point from Waldingfield Road went against the local plan’s insistence that access to housing in Chilton Woods is via a distributor road linking to the A134.

Ward councillors Frank Lawrenson and Margaret Maybury also raised concerns about difficulties of Waldingfield Road for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians because of lorry traffic, and a recent fatality further up the road.

Valerie Hart, chairman of Chilton Parish Council said: “We have a number of concerns about this application – there’s a clearly laid out policy by the council and we expect people to follow it.”

The letter added that talks behind closed doors not involving the parish council was “highly unsatisfactory”.

A spokesman from the developers was unavailable for comment at the time of going to press.

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