Feathers fly over duck farm proposal

RESIDENTS have launched a campaign to battle against plans for a duck farm housing thousands of birds in a quiet Suffolk village.Mid Suffolk council is currently considering whether to grant planning permission for the new application at The Cedars in Mendlesham Green, near Stowmarket.

RESIDENTS have launched a campaign to battle against plans for a duck farm housing thousands of birds in a quiet Suffolk village.

Mid Suffolk council is currently considering whether to grant planning permission for the new application at The Cedars in Mendlesham Green, near Stowmarket.

The operation would house 12,000 birds and villagers who fear smells, lorries and their quality of life being shattered have been putting billboards around the community.

Irene Barker, a resident for almost 30 years and a retired head of English at Diss High School, is leading the campaign against the development.


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She said: “We have been busy putting signs up around the village and getting people to put them up in their gardens, as well as writing letters.

“No-one except the applicant is in favour of this. There will be 18-tonners moving around and the potential for extremely hazardous conditions on the roads, we already have cars ending up in ditches.

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“The building is enormous, eight metres high, it's a dark grey colour in the open countryside that will be seen for miles around.

“Most of the hedgerows will be low growing bushes and the occasional trees are tiny and will take 100 years to screen this.

“The smells from duck units are pretty appalling, chicken units are bad enough. This is not on, it's inappropriate, enormous and will generate more traffic that could add to the hazards on the local Z bend.”

But Lavenham-based planning and development consultants Tim Harbord Associates, acting as the agent for applicant Allard & Co, from Walnut Tree Farm in Stowupland, near Stowmarket, tried to ease residents' fears.

The application is a revised version after an earlier proposal was withdrawn, and now includes a new farm track to ease concerns about the impact of farm traffic on local residents.

It also includes comprehensive landscaping proposals to address concerns about the impact of the buildings on the landscape.

The agent said that the buildings will be insulated and any noise from the ducks will be contained and that smells will only be significant when the units are cleaned.

And he said: “The new building would not significantly intrude into the landscape. The local road system is capable of accommodating the low number of additional vehicles.”

A spokeswoman for the district council said they are currently consulting people on the development and will be likely to discuss it at a committee meeting, maybe during early February.

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