Derelict building to be used again

A DERELICT flats site at the centre of a development row for eight years has today been freed up for housing.The Clumpfield site, off Cambridge Drive in Ipswich, is back in the hands of Ipswich Borough Council despite a leasing agreed with Raglan Housing Association not running out for 117 years.

A DERELICT flats site at the centre of a development row for eight years has today been freed up for housing.

The Clumpfield site, off Cambridge Drive in Ipswich, is back in the hands of Ipswich Borough Council despite a leasing agreed with Raglan Housing Association not running out for 117 years.

The two organisations have been at loggerheads since Raglan decided not to develop the site shortly after signing the lease in 1999, leaving the property empty and boarded up.

Intense discussions earlier this week ended in agreement that the council should get the property back and councillor Steven Wells, responsible for housing, said it will now concentrate on providing affordable homes.


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The Star revealed last month how the flats were badly damaged by fire on January 17.

With metal boards on windows and doors and hidden away in a cul-de-sac location, it has also become an area for youngsters to loiter, and for rubbish to be dumped.

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Mr Wells said: “This decision is great news for the residents of Ipswich.

“The flats have been hanging round, contributing nothing to the town for eight years, despite there being more than 3,000 people on the housing register.

“The council and the housing association both had a responsibility to help with affordable housing but were in a tussle which wasn't helping anybody.

“We will be looking at redeveloping the Clumpfields site as early as possible.

“It is also good news because it will reduce the anti-social behaviour which has been going on, and the negative impact on the environment,”

The handover between Raglan and the council is expected to take around a month. Mr Wells said the flats will probably then be demolished before building work begins.

Weblinks:

www.ipswich.gov.uk

www.raglan.org

N How would you like to see the site redeveloped? Do you think there is enough affordable housing in Ipswich? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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