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Parents rally against playground plans

PUBLISHED: 23:00 02 June 2005 | UPDATED: 05:54 02 March 2010

PLAYTIME in a Suffolk village is today on hold after a children's unofficial play area has been forced to make way for a housing development.

An area of green at Millfields, Haughley, has been fenced off and recreation has been suspended as builders prepare to start work on a new sheltered housing scheme.

PLAYTIME in a Suffolk village is today on hold after a children's unofficial play area has been forced to make way for a housing development.

An area of green at Millfields, Haughley, has been fenced off and recreation has been suspended as builders prepare to start work on a new sheltered housing scheme.

The green has been adopted by the village's children for decades and parents are now concerned there is nowhere safe for them to play.

Mother-of-two Donna Marner, who lives opposite the land, has now started a petition.

She said: "My husband and I have opened our front lawn to all the children now. If not, they would be in the road.

"The land has been used by children for decades, it's the only place for them to play.

"Twenty five to 30 of them regularly use it to play football on or sit and talk. "They are never any trouble.

"We've known for ages the land would be developed, but we have always been told by the council that some of the land would be kept for the children.

"Now we've seen the plans we've found out it has railings and hedges round it and no part will be open to the public.

"There's a perimeter fence up now and it's like Colditz."

John Davie-Thornhill, district councillor for Haughley, said: "This is council owned land being converted into sheltered housing so it is in the local interest.

"The problem is that it's a piece of land central to the village that children have adopted to play on.

"As the development has progressed the problem has been noted and it is hoped somewhere else can be found as a trade off for the children.

"This is certainly still the plan, it's just the area hasn't been identified yet."

Will your children be left with nowhere to play? Or are you pleased the development is going ahead? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk


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