Beauty spot saved from developers

AN IPSWICH beauty spot has been saved today following a decision to protect it from developers.Woodberry Property developers appealed for an inquiry after twice being refused permission to build on woodland at the back of Mitre Way off Bishop's Hill.

AN IPSWICH beauty spot has been saved today following a decision to protect it from developers.

Woodberry Property developers appealed for an inquiry after twice being refused permission to build on woodland at the back of Mitre Way off Bishop's Hill.

But the secretary of state has now ruled that the area must remain protected. Ipswich Borough Council today praised the decision by the secretary of state to leave the area protected.

Mike Smith, head of planning at the council, said: "We are pleased our decision to protect this area has been upheld.


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"There are key areas in the town which we feel should remain greenfield areas.

"We have fought and won similar inquiries on land near to St Clements Hospital and Bucklesham Road.

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"Inquiries involve a lot of effort and expense on the council's part but we feel it is important not only to prevent these developers but to stop others which maybe thinking about subjecting future applications in these areas."

Mr Smith added that while the council does look to work alongside developers on this instance Woodberry had originally been granted permission to work in the area on the understanding existing woodland was left alone.

Woodberry built 25 homes in the area five years ago.

Ipswich Borough Councillor Liz Harsant, also welcomed the decision.

She said: "It's been going on for years now and it's been a huge worry for the people living nearby.

"There's such a lot of wildlife in the woodland so we're all delighted about the decision.

"The woodland would have gone if they had been allowed to build there so it's a great relief."

Woodberry refused to comment on the decision.

Clive Wilkinson, chairman of the Woodland Action Group which opposed the development, echoed Mrs Harsant's comments.

He said: "It's a superb decision. It vindicates all the work the volunteers have done over the last three years.

"It's important to have woodland like that in our towns and it makes Ipswich quite special."

Patrick Taylor, a conservation architect, heralded the decision as a victory for democracy.

He added: "What's the point in having local plans if they are not going to be upheld?"

n. What do you think of the decision? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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