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Persimmon admits to Framlingham Mount Pleasant errors prompting launch of task group

PUBLISHED: 13:24 28 November 2018 | UPDATED: 13:24 28 November 2018

The Mount Pleasant development at Framlingham, being built by Persimmon Homes. Picture: RACHEL EDGE

The Mount Pleasant development at Framlingham, being built by Persimmon Homes. Picture: RACHEL EDGE

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Developers behind a controversial housing development in Framlingham have said that lessons have been learnt after a "catalogue of errors" resulted in dozens of homes being built incorrectly.

The Mount Pleasant development at Framlingham, being built by Persimmon Homes. Picture: RACHEL EDGEThe Mount Pleasant development at Framlingham, being built by Persimmon Homes. Picture: RACHEL EDGE

Persimmon Homes was granted planning permission in January 2016 to develop 95 homes on Mount Pleasant, but errors were spotted by locals and reported to Suffolk Coastal District Council nearly two years ago in January 2017.

Among them were claims that some properties were 1m away from their designated spot, a reduction in access points, one bus shelter having been discarded and a plethora of issues with the designs that included external pipes and metre boxes being established which were not on the plans, chimneys on the wrong homes, porch canopy designs not being to plan, and errors with windows, bargeboards and gables.

On Monday, Persimmon was called to Suffolk Coastal’s planning committee to answer questions.

Councillor Stephen Burroughes said: “It seems it’s been a catalogue of errors in terms of enforcement.

“If any other applicant came forward and said it’s unfortunate we would give them short shrift.

“Just because it’s a large development I don’t see we should let them off the hook.”

While councillors praised the work of officers in compiling the evidence, question marks were raised about how it had taken more than 18 months to come to committee, with building continuing during that time.

It also emerged that monitoring the build was in line with the plans was the responsibility of a firm used by Persimmon, and not by the council.

Persimmon had submitted two planning applications which were debated at Monday’s meeting which would have altered the conditions and taken into account the changes, but the committee refused to back the plans, asking instead for them to be deferred so that more work to mitigate against the changes could happen.

A liaison group is set to be established comprising the council’s head of planning services Philip Ridley, Persimmon and Framlingham Town Council.

Stuart McAdam from Persimmon said there were slight differences on the aerial masterplan images compared to the ground survey shots used for the working plan, which was responsible for some properties being slightly out of place.

He said: “As far as we were aware the masterplan approved by the council was accurate so we commenced the development in 2016 that we believed were in the correct positions.

“[After contact from locals] we undertook investigations at that time and realised there were errors.”

Mr McAdam said the “majority of the site is in the correct position” and added: “It’s unfortunate it’s happened in this instance, and we do regret there has been confusion but what we have done is look at it as pointed out and sought immediate action.”

It is not yet clear when the amended plans will come back to the committee.

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