Northern Fringe inquiry due

IPSWICH: Controversial proposals for a new housing estate on the northern fringes of the town are to go to a public inquiry next week.

Developers Mersea Homes applied for planning permission to build 1,035 homes, a neighbourhood centre, a new primary school, and a new health centre on land off Westerfield Road to the south of the railway line.

The land is proposed for housing in the borough’s new local development framework document – but it is seen as a long-term proposal to be developed in about 15 years’ time.

Mersea Homes’ application to develop the site now was rejected by Ipswich council planners and now it is to go to appeal.

The appeal will start at the IP-City centre on Tuesday at 10am and is expected to last 10 days.

The developers will first be given the chance to put their case for development of the site – to be followed by the council arguing why it should not be developed at this time.

There is also expected to be an opportunity for protesters to argue that the land should not be developed at all.

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The proposed new development has prompted furious opposition from some residents of north Ipswich who fear it will ruin the green belt separating the town from the countryside – and especially that it will suck Westerfield into the town itself.

Although the public inquiry will last for 10 days, a final decision is not expected to be announced until autumn at the earliest.

nShould a new community be built on Ipswich’s northern fringe? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail

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