‘A war has started’ says resident over pitch issues

A Hadleigh resident has declared war on the town’s high school over problems with an all-weather pitch after an application to authorise a light was approved.

Babergh District Council’s development committee approved the retrospective application from Hadleigh High School for a light – part of a floodlight at the multi-use games area – which shines on a footpath.

Ken Lewis, from Station Road, whose house backs on to the pitch, challenged the validity of the application due to perceived errors in the site plans, which will now be evaluated by the council.

Speaking during the meeting, Mr Lewis said: “Adequate lighting already exists, with low-level security lights operating throughout the hours of use.”

He said details, including the proximity of the nearest house, were incorrect in the case officer’s report and that since the games area was built, surrounding residents have had their lives ruined by excessive noise and light pollution.

Councillor Brian Riley added: “A mugging is how the residents feel in their relationship with the school.”

However, planning officers reminded councillors that the application did not refer to other issues with the facilities, and councillors voted to approve the application, limiting the light’s usage to that of the surrounding floodlights.

Speaking after the meeting, Mr Lewis said: “War has started. I will continue to contest the decision.”

He added that he wants the games area to only be used when weather conditions prevent grass pitches being used in winter to reduce the impact on residents.