Action needed over council house ‘eyesore’

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

A Hands off Hadleigh campaigner has turned her attention to tidying up a council-owned “eyesore” on the former Tesco site.

After successfully fighting plans by the supermarket giant to build a store on the Brett Works site for the last 13 years, Jan Byrne is now calling on Babergh District Council to smarten up the area.

In particular, she is calling on the council to reinstate windows in Bridge House, which have been boarded up for the last 10 years, and get the building ready to start being used again.

She said: “This property is very obvious as one enters the town from Gallows Hill.

“Having had a couple of windows vandalised, Babergh decided to board up all of the windows, leaving the eyesore we have today.

“If any of us that live in the conservation area boarded up our windows, the Babergh enforcement officer would be on to us very quickly, demanding that the windows were reinstated.”

She added: “Now that Babergh is not about to sell its car park to Tesco, how about reinstating the windows at Bridge House and putting it back into residential use?”

Mrs Byrne said Bridge House was initially used by the town council. But in the 1980s, the town council leased part of the Guildhall and then Bridge House was used for storage.

A spokeswoman for Babergh District Council said: “We can understand Cllr Byrne’s point of view and perhaps this is something that could be part of further discussions in the right forum.

“At the moment, Bridge House is boarded up to protect it from the type of vandalism it has been subjected to in the past and to stop it costing the taxpayer any more money in repairs.

“Although the building is in use, it doesn’t have any of the necessary utilities for it to be used as a residence or office space.”

With the Tesco store plan being rejected on economic grounds, Mrs Byrne said she was calling on the council to make Tesco tidy up the site, including a bungalow which had been boarded up and left derelict.