Halesworth residents and councillors form group aiming to shape town’s future

Chairman of Halesworth Town Council, Peter Dutton. Picture: Halesworth Town Council

Chairman of Halesworth Town Council, Peter Dutton. Picture: Halesworth Town Council - Credit: Halesworth Town Council

Residents of a town and its council have come together to look into how best to prepare it for potential major developments.

Chediston street, Halesworth. Picture: Nick Butcher

Chediston street, Halesworth. Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

Concerned by how the town could be reshaped by the recently-published Waveney Local Plan, members of Halesworth Town Council and residents have set up what they have called an Urban Improvement Work Group.

Split into teams over eight topic areas, the group will gather information about problems currently facing the town, so as to best prepare for any future developments.

The first draft of Waveney District Council's local plan touted around 650 to 690 new homes to be built in the Halesworth area, which prompted the founding of the group.

Peter Dutton, chairman of Halesworth Town Council, said: 'The idea is to get residents involved, look at the current problems facing Halesworth, and the impact any future developments could have on the town.

'This way, as a town, we can offer suggestions on how to manage the impact of the increase in homes, residents and vehicles.'

The project will see the group look at eight different areas; motorised traffic, bicycles, pedestrians, the Thoroughfare, road surface, signage, street furniture and parking.

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Over the coming months, they will gather as much information and ideas as they can on each of these areas, before presenting reports on how each of these areas could be improved - not only in the event of the local plans going through, but also in the here and now.

Mr Dutton added: 'We are hoping from these reports that we will come up with a series of proposals to improve the town.'

He said he hoped the group can provide two or three potential solutions to any problems it researches. These will be first presented to residents for their comment.

After this consultation, the work group will finalise its report and the town council will present clear proposals to the district council.

'Developers are going to decide what they think is best, as will the planners and if the town does nothing, then it will get what it is given.

'We want to put ourselves in a position where we can provide as much information as possible on what is best for Halesworth and its residents.'

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