September 17 2014 Latest news:
Friday, August 22, 2014
Residents are furious over proposals to use land opposite their homes as a temporary site for travellers.
Homeowners at Treetops in Felixstowe say the strip of land is “completely the wrong place” for a camp – and would be seen by everyone entering and leaving the resort.
Suffolk County Council has shortlisted seven sites for possible use as temporary homes for travellers for up to three months at a time.
Three of the sites are in east Suffolk – the land between Candlet Road and Treetops, Felixstowe; a lay-by on Felixstowe Road, Levington; and the former Little Chef site, off the A14 by the Orwell Bridge – and one is likely to be chosen.
Treetops’ residents’ spokesman Raymond Pomroy said people were seething at the suggestion that the land near their homes – a short strip of meadow grazed occasionally by horses – was suitable for travellers.
He said: “People have been knocking on my door wet-eyed with fright and bulging-eyed with rage – they cannot believe this suggestion and we must stop it at all costs.
“People are worried about the impact on their lifestyle, the lowering of the value of their homes, the downgrading of the public’s perception of Treetops, a select private close of three-bed and four-bed detached homes, and the view they will have out of their windows in future.”
They were also concerned about access across a grassed area used by youngsters to play and dog walkers.
Traffic to the site – not just the travellers caravans, but also their cars and work trucks – would also have to come through busy Walton High Street and then into Gulpher Road, recently made a “quiet lane” by the county council.
Mr Pomroy, who runs two businesses in the town, said having an official travellers camp as the welcome to Felixstowe would deter many visitors. It would also have an impact on the future development of the field next door with homes.
He said: “It is completely the wrong place.”
Council leader Mark Bee said introducing three gypsy and traveller short stay stopping sites in Suffolk will save taxpayers money, help meet the needs of travellers moving through the county and reduce unauthorised encampments.