Half century link with Hadleigh to end
INDUSTRIAL storage tank company Cookson and Zinn is preparing to move out of Hadleigh, the town where it has operated for almost half a century.Chairman John Boudry, who acquired the company in December 1999, said the main reasons for the move were the need to expand and the difficulties of transporting the huge tanks made at the factory along the tiny country lane outside.
INDUSTRIAL storage tank company Cookson and Zinn is preparing to move out of Hadleigh, the town where it has operated for almost half a century.
Chairman John Boudry, who acquired the company in December 1999, said the main reasons for the move were the need to expand and the difficulties of transporting the huge tanks made at the factory along the tiny country lane outside.
He added a move to a bigger site could also increase the workforce by between 15 and 20 per cent.
He said: "We started manufacturing more and more gigantic products and with that came a whole host of associated issues.
"Even if the site could have been made suitable to manufacture, there was the whole infrastructure around it. In one case we sent a couple of tanks out which took longer to get to the A12 than they did to get to London."
Storage of more and more ancillary products was also becoming a problem, creating increased lorry traffic to and from the site, off Pound Lane, which is in open countryside about half a mile from Hadleigh.
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The company has applied to Babergh District Council for planning permission to convert the Hadleigh site, of approximately 7.5 acres, to a housing estate and hopes to finance the move out of the sale of the land.
But the application poses a dilemma for planners – Babergh has a policy of trying to keep employment in rural areas, and normally would ask an applicant to prove a site was not marketable for alternative employment before allowing a change of use.
However, the site's drawback is the inadequate access road and that could equally be a problem if the land were to be used for housing.
Richard Watson, head of planning control at Babergh District Council, said: "We have to make a decision as to what's more important, brownfield or sustainability."
Mr Boudry said his company would be working closely with Babergh in seeking a solution, and he hoped that it would be possible for CZ to move to a new site within 12 to 18 months.