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New homes project still in doubt

PUBLISHED: 16:36 19 December 2001 | UPDATED: 11:04 03 March 2010

A NEW sheltered housing scheme for the elderly on the Shotley peninsula is still hanging in the balance today after councillors decided to defer making a final decision on the application.

A NEW sheltered housing scheme for the elderly on the Shotley peninsula is still hanging in the balance today after councillors decided to defer making a final decision on the application.

Members of Babergh District Council's development committee voted 8-4 against an application to build 38 flats for the frail and elderly on land off Bentley Lane, in Stutton.

While fully supportive of the principle, they felt that there was still a number of other possible alternative sites, including several in Holbrook, that needed to be examined before a final decision could be made.

A decision on the scheme, lodged by housing association, Housing 21 in conjunction with Babergh District Council and Suffolk County Council, will now be deferred until further investigations of alternative sites has been carried out.

Clive Arthey, chairman of the development committee, said: "The issue has aroused a great deal of interest both in Stutton and across the whole of the Shotley peninsular. The whole of the committee is supportive of the principle of Very Sheltered Housing in the Shotley peninsular, but felt minded to defer a final decision in order to gather more information on other sites."

The committee heard that 27 letters of objection had been received from residents in the area.

Concerns were raised about the position of the site outside the build up boundary of the village and fears that it would set a precedent for future development.

Speaking at the meeting, chairman of Stutton Parish Council, Neil Mordey, argued that the infrastructure of the village did not fit the application.

"We have one shop which is about to close, the only medical facility is a part-time vet," he said, describing how the residents of the scheme would be isolated.

He added that the parish council, which has previously recommended refusal, has concerns over site access and the appearance of the two storey building proposed.

"Generally we feel a development of this scale and size is inappropriate," he said.

Speaking on behalf of the applicants, Judith Hawkshaw from Suffolk County Council Social Services and Suffolk Health Authority, said that the proposed scheme fulfilled the needs of elderly people in the area.


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