Campaigners fear new 130-home plan for Sudbury will eliminate green space

Sudbury Nick Miller wants Sudbury to keep more green spaces.
Picture Mark Westley
Sudbury Nick Miller wants Sudbury to keep more green spaces. Picture Mark Westley

Sudbury Town Council has given its backing to a plan for another significant housing development in Sudbury – but a community group fears it could eliminate badly-needed green space.

Catesby Estates Ltd is seeking outline planning permission to build 130 new homes, plus parking and associated works, on agricultural land north of Waldingfield Road, formerly used as an orchard plantation.

Falling within the Chilton Woods strategic allocation, which includes plans for another 1,150 homes and commercial space, this new proposal intends for 35 per cent of the 130 homes to be affordable housing.

A planning statement issued on behalf of the developer claims the plan would provide a major boost to the town’s housing needs, and result in walking and cycling route improvements, including potential links to the larger Chilton Woods development nearby.

“The site will make a considerable contribution towards housing supply, providing much-needed homes and contributing to the social dimension of sustainable development,” the planning statement reads.

“The proposals represent sustainable development in social, environmental and economic terms.

“The benefits of the development will clearly outweigh any potential adverse impacts and it’s considered that planning permission should therefore be granted without delay in accordance with planning policy.”

The proposal was backed by Sudbury Town Council at a planning committee meeting at the end of August, with no objections lodged.

But the Sudbury Area Green Belt Group has voiced concerns that the huge quantity of homes now being planned for this area risks sealing off the entire north end of Sudbury from the countryside.

Group secretary Nick Miller said he intended to object strongly to the application, arguing that the site north of Waldingfield Road was “a beautiful spot badly needed” as a green space for the Chilton Woods development, as well as a continuation of the cycle path around Henny Field.

He called on others to make their views and concerns heard by submitting comments to Babergh District Council.

“We would prefer that no houses are built there and that it be publicly-accessible green space,” said Mr Miller.

“The problem is that Chilton Woods is becoming more dense. The denser you make it, the more important it is to have enough green space, not just for residents of Chilton Woods, but also people in the rest of Sudbury.

“It continues to disappoint me that there has been no helpful involvement from organisations such as Suffolk Wildlife Trust or Natural England.

“I personally am definite that this must be one of the most central of our green belt actions. I will also write to all local councillors – enough is enough.”

To view the application, go to Babergh District Council’s online planning portal at https://planning.babergh.gov.uk/online-applications and enter the planning reference number DC/17/04052