Concerns over access go against development plan

Councillors have voted against plans for a property in Sudbury that would require access under a 150-year-old footbridge. Pictured: Resident Peter Hall ANL-141119-075601009
Councillors have voted against plans for a property in Sudbury that would require access under a 150-year-old footbridge. Pictured: Resident Peter Hall ANL-141119-075601009

Plans to build a property on the site of a former quarry with access under an old footbridge have been opposed by councillors.

The new one-and-a-half storey home on land south of Queen’s Close, Sudbury, would require access through a 150-year-old bridge that was recently damaged by contractors working on the site.

Residents and councillors alike were vocal in their opposition to the plans at Sudbury Town Council’s planning committee meeting on Monday.

Particular criticism was reserved for the planned access from Bridge Terrace to East Street, which residents felt could not only lead to further damage to the bridge, but would restrict access rights to current properties and cause an obstruction to emergency services.

In November, the bridge was left damaged and a gas pipe and electric cable were struck, leaving residents in nearby Bridge Terrace without power while repairs were carried out.

A subsequent inquiry by Babergh District Council led to the project being deemed as unlawful, as it lacked the required planning permission to carry out engineering works.

Committee member Sue Ayres suggested the work carried out should be reversed, saying: “Maybe they should come and fill it in again.”

At the meeting, members of the Bridge Street residents’ group expressed their disapproval at the planned access.

Stephane Chapotot, from Bridge Terrace, spoke on behalf of the group.

“They will have at least three cars and that’s quite a lot of traffic on a terribly narrow track,” he said.

Mr Chapotot said he had worries over the development as previous work, when the bridge was damaged, had gone past his boundary and claimed contractors had actually lifted the bridge up.

He added he was not against the plans, but would like to see a different access route.

Members unanimously decided to oppose the application on the grounds of “loss of amenity caused by the impact of a loss of access to local residents, access concerns and possible restrictions to emergency services”.

The full planning application will now go before Babergh District Council in the coming weeks.