Homes campaigner to stand for election

A LEADING campaigner against moves to build around 2,000 homes on countryside at Felixstowe is hoping to be elected to the town council.

A LEADING campaigner against moves to build around 2,000 homes on countryside at Felixstowe is hoping to be elected to the town council.

Gillian Mason, of the Save Felixstowe Countryside group, is standing as an independent in a by-election, called following the death of county council chairman Ann Rodwell.

Mrs Mason is one of four candidates who will contest the east ward seat in Old Felixstowe on Thursday - she will be against Conservative county councillor Graham Newman, Liberal Democrat Bernard Price and Hattie Bennett, standing for Labour.

Felixstowe-born Mrs Mason, of Ferry Road, said she had no allegiance to any political party and would be fighting to influence Suffolk Coastal to change its plan to swamp the area - north of Candlet Road - with houses.

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“I may be a single issue candidate but I will be a multi-issue councillor,” she said.

“I want to play a full and active part in every discussion which involves our town.

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“Save Felixstowe Countryside has never said 'no' to all new housing.

“We support the provision of affordable housing to satisfy a proven local need, but we do not support the sacrifice of valuable greenfield land to make way for a huge increase in population, traffic and social problems to satisfy an unproven political need.

“I value the beauty and peace of the countryside around us, but if this proposal goes ahead we will lose it for ever.”

Mrs Bennett admitted that where to build homes was a difficult decision and that affordable homes were needed.

“We need houses so our children can stay in the Felixstowe area,” she said. “The input from younger people gives a boost to the town and the shops.”

Mr Newman said: “Everyone you meet is against developing the land north of Candlet Road. It's a beautiful part of Felixstowe we all love and appreciate and I think it should be the very last resort before it is even contemplated.”

Mr Price said: “I am concerned. Consultants said the countryside here should be made an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and that has been ignored and instead it is targeted for housing. We need affordable homes desperately but that is not the place for them.”

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

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