"Enough is enough" say campaigners against vast Gipping Valley homes proposals
PUBLISHED: 05:30 28 March 2019
Simon Lee Photography
Campaigners against the vast expansion of two villages near Ipswich are saying "enough is enough" as plans for more new homes in the area are submitted.
A campaign group was formed at the start of the year over the number of planning applications coming forward to develop hundreds of homes in Sproughton and Bramford, which could see the area quadruple in size.
More than eight applications totalling up to 2,000 homes have now come forward by various developers along a stretch of the Gipping Valley less than five miles long.
Concerns had already been raised by the villages over the amount of homes they were expected to take, additional traffic on those roads and the health impact of increased pollution.
Rhona Jermyn, chairman of the Sproughton Working Group, said: “We feel that Babergh District Council have failed us as a community by not forming a joint strategic plan.
“The community as a whole from Great Blakenham to Pinewood should be engaged on a cohesive solution.”
During Mid Suffolk District Council’s planning committee on Wednesday, March 27, one of the applications for 195 homes by CEMEX Operations UK Ltd on land east of The Street, Bramford, was given approval.
District and county councillor for the area John Field said: “There is considerable concern about the sheer volume of housing.
“One understands that being close to Ipswich we probably get a heavier share of that but this does seem dramatic.”
Suffolk county councillor for Sproughton Christopher Hudson said: “I feel like saying enough is enough. I feel like Sproughton is taking too much flack on several fronts, not least the sustainability of development.
“It’s not a sustainable solution to put massive amounts of traffic in the area and I think Sproughton is being asked to take too much too quickly.
“People are very worried and concerned on the health front, and I share those concerns.”
The two villages straddle the border of the Babergh and Mid Suffolk districts, meaning that the applications will be decided by different planning committees depending on which side of the border they lie.
A joint local plan for the area – a formal document which guides where homes should be built – is currently in development with a first draft expected this July.
It is not yet clear how many homes Bramford and Sproughton will be expected to take in those plans.