Action group hope for town’s park land

Latest community news from the Suffolk Free Press,, @sfpsudbury on Twitter
Latest community news from the Suffolk Free Press,, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

Park campaigners say they are optimistic they have managed to secure the future of a public open space in Hadleigh.

Save Cox’s Park action group collected 1,000 signatures from residents against plans by Babergh District Council to build detached, executive homes on the land at the back of East House in George Street.

The council withdrew its original plans for the site earlier this year, with new proposals set to go on show for the first time tomorrow at Hadleigh Leisure Centre in Stonehouse Road, from 10am to 4pm.

Campaign leader Jonas Grist said: “We have made an application for Cox’s Park to become a village green and this has to be done via Suffolk County Council.

“A notice, advertising our application, will be on the site this week, so the application is well under way.

“As Babergh owns the site, it is down to it to say if it approves or objects and, if it objects, as we presume the council will, it will go to a public hearing.”

Mr Grist said the application had been made following amendments made to an act of Parliament which would make it harder for applications in future.

“We just managed to sneak it through in time because there have been amendments to the Growth and Infrastructure Act which means that if a village green is subject to a planning application, a submission for village green status cannot be made.”

Babergh is staging the public exhibition before it formally submits it proposal for planning permission.

Another Hadleigh group – called Open East House – is campaigning against plans to turn the listed, former community centre, into apartments.

Campaigners say 100 people have completed a survey on the group’s website saying what they want to happen to the Georgian building, which has been empty for 10 years.