Plans for ‘anonymous’ 150 homes delayed as councillors block approval

The land west of A144 St John's Road. Photo: Google Maps

The land west of A144 St John's Road. Photo: Google Maps - Credit: Archant

A bid to build 150 new homes remains undecided, with councillors unable to find a legal reason to reject plans despite strong opposition.

Members of East Suffolk Council's northern planning committee voiced several concerns about the plans for land around Bungay Pool on St John's Road, including the fact that only seven of the homes would be allocated for affordable housing.

However, with permission for up to 150 homes, with 5pc affordable housing, already granted in 2016, councillors claimed their "hands were tied."

A motion to approve the proposed layout and design of the homes failed to pass by five votes to four, with the decision subsequently deferred until a later meeting.

The meeting, on February 11, drew a strong turnout from local residents, with Bungay town mayor Sue Collins speaking on behalf of the town council.

She said: "It has been half a century since we have seen a development of this scale and it could increase the population of the town by 20pc, but this is an enclave of anonymous dwellings which will be littered with parked cars.

"This decision will have consequences for many decades to come, but a refusal might allow an opportunity to create a masterplan for the site. The layout is unsuitable for emergency vehicles to get around."

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The proposal featured a mixture of one-bedroom flats to four-bedroom detached homes.

A spokesperson for the applicant said: "We are providing four areas of open space and character areas. We feel it will create a pleasant place to live."

The homes would take up a third of the area, with the applicant claiming to be planning commercial developments for another third, while a separate landowner is intending to build more homes on the final part.

However, councillors fear the plans would limit the options available for the other developments.

Councillor Graham Elliott said: "We have got to look at the bigger picture and decide what we are trying to achieve.

"This will have a serious impact on the other new homes planned for Bungay and we need a bit more of an overview on it all."

Councillors urged the two landowners to discuss plans and called for a masterplan for the site.

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