Video: Framlingham Residents' Association holds day of 'civil obedience' in opposition to greenfield housing plans
PUBLISHED: 18:02 19 January 2015 | UPDATED: 18:28 19 January 2015
About 50 protesters today highlighted their opposition to new housing planned for one of Suffolk's most historic market towns and the "chaos" they claim it will bring the community.
Framlingham Residents’ Association (FRAm) held a day of “civil obedience” to make their feelings known to a visiting council planning committee.
Members gathered in Fairfield Road, where Taylor Wimpey plans to build 163 new homes, and waved banners calling for “no development on greenfield sites”.
The protesters then followed Suffolk Coastal’s north planning committee for its second site visit at Mount Pleasant, where Persimmon Homes has submitted plans for a further 107 homes.
FRAm had also called on its supporters to flood the town with traffic and occupy every parking space to highlight concerns over how the infrastructure will cope with the extra people brought by the new housing.
FRAm chairman Christopher Sharpe said he was “absolutely delighted” with the turnout.
“It’s a real show of localism and democracy in action,” he said.
“We have shown the councillors how strongly we feel about development on these greenfield sites and we’ve also shown, just by parking our cars, how it would result in traffic chaos across the town.”
Genevieve Christie, a fellow member, added: “Framlingham is a beautiful market town and if these greenfield developments go ahead it’s going to be changed forever. I think people also need to be aware that the infrastructure in the town won’t cope with the number of houses proposed.”
Christopher Hudson, who represents Framlingham at Suffolk Coastal and is a member of the planning committee, said the turnout was “impressive”.
“These people are not a bunch of Nimbys, they are concerned residents and they make some very cogent arguments,” he said.
Taylor Wimpey has said the scheme will deal with infrastructure issues and offer “much-needed” affordable housing and a financial contribution to the local community.
Persimmon Homes was unavailable for comment.
FRAm said it would now plan its representations for the council hearing next month.