Residents voice opposition over housing plans

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Sixty residents in Glemsford have signed a petition opposing a number of new affordable homes, presenting it to council bosses yesterday.

Villagers are objecting to a total of 15 houses being built on former farmland at the rear of Schoolfield,

Glemsford Parish Council chairman Michael Brown said the plan had been around for three years, with several other sites in the village looked at before Schoolfield was proposed.

He said: “I’m not sure who has organised the petition, but I believe some people from Schoolfield, whose houses back on to the site, are against it.

“We are a democracy. They are perfectly entitled to air their views.”

Mr Brown said the district council already owned access to the site, and the former farmland came from Glemsford United Charities.

“The parish council supports the application because there is a need for affordable new homes in the village; we have already had people coming to the parish office asking if they can go on a waiting list,” he added.

The plans have been drawn up Ely-based The Design Partnership on behalf of Babergh District Council for rent by the council.

In a design and access statement, The Design Partnership said: “The land was identified in 2012 through discussions with Glemsford Parish Council, which was keen to progress a local needs housing scheme.

“A number of sites were identified and, following liaison with the council’s development management team, the site was considered to be the most appropriate.

“A public information event was held in September, organised jointly by the council’s strategic housing team and the parish council to advise the local and wider community of the proposals and seek feedback on these.

“Generally, visitors welcomed the proposed housing, although adjacent neighbours held concerns regarding overlooking and increased traffic movement.”

It is likely that the planning application will be considered by planning committee on April 22.