Fresh doubts over business park

DEVELOPMENT of an 18-acre business park in the heart of a village could be scuppered if rail safety experts believe it will cause danger on a level crossing.

DEVELOPMENT of an 18-acre business park in the heart of a village could be scuppered if rail safety experts believe it will cause danger on a level crossing.

Planners are waiting for HM Railway Inspectorate to give its views on the project for the old Station Nurseries site in Station Road, Trimley St Mary.

One of the main concerns is that traffic will pull straight out of the development and turn left to cross the level crossing, where in the past cars have been caught stranded on the tracks as the barriers have come down behind and in front of them.

Parish councillors believe installation of a new warning light at the exit of the nurseries site to tell drivers the barriers are about to come down has helped improve the situation.

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A report by planning officers said: "The adjacent railway carries approximately 80 trains per day both passenger and freight.

"There are concerns that the increased use of the site and the associated increase in traffic movements, particularly with such a restricted access could create highway dangers particularly on the level crossing.

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"The views of HM Railway Inspectorate will be critical in assessing this proposal."

Suffolk Coastal's south area development control sub committee is to visit the site before deciding whether to approve the project.

The scheme will involve using some of the site for showrooms, shops, offices and storage, eight portable buildings for use as craft workshops, plus a horticultural area and new toilets.

The old nursery and garden centre closed about three years ago and the new owner has leased land and buildings on the site to a number of different businesses.

However, the council says some of the uses do not have planning permission and consent will also be needed for proposed buildings and new uses on the land, which has been used for horticultural purposes for at least 50 years.

Trimley St Mary Parish Council has given its support but wants assurances over the types of goods which will be stored on site and that safety regulations will be followed.

Four letters of objection have been lodged by residents concerned over the increased use of the site; the establishment of a light industrial estate; traffic danger and possible pollution.

In their report, planning officers said the main issues are the suitability of the existing unauthorised uses on the site, the proposed new uses, including craft workshops, extra traffic, and the impact on homes and the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

What do you think? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail

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