Sudbury: Residents hint they would not object to building homes at People’s Park

AFTER controversial plans for a piece of NHS-owned land in Sudbury were revealed to the public, a local group has hinted it would not be opposed to a housing development on the site.

Harp Close Meadow, or People’s Park as it is known locally, was originally earmarked for a new hospital. But after plans for a health centre in Church Field Road were agreed, West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust announced its intention to sell the site, along with two former hospitals in the town.

The trust has held two public exhibitions setting out clear objectives for Harp Close Meadow, including a development of 120 homes, with just 40% of the land retained as public open space. Most local groups have vowed to continue to fight to retain the whole of the site as a park.

However, the Sudbury Society has now come up with a formal response that backs several ideas set out in the proposal, including the provision of open space to the north and east of the site, and a housing development – if the number of dwellings could be reduced to 100 to comply with an earlier local plan.

A spokesperson said: “With few exceptions, most recent development in Sudbury is tired and unimaginative with little sense of place. There is the opportunity here to achieve a truly modern development which nevertheless belongs to Suffolk and would set a high standard for the new Chilton Woods development to emulate.”

But speaking at one of the public exhibitions, town councillor Jan Osborne said she was disappointed with the NHS proposals, adding: “The NHS should be mindful that open space in a town is essential for our health and we currently have no open space at all in the east ward.”

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