Resident's fear over footpath

A STUTTON resident today fears his garden could be used as a footpath to more than 40 new flats.Mick Keeble, of Cattsfield, claims a new £3.2 million state-of-the-art housing project in the village could lead to people walking straight through his garden to the get to it.

A STUTTON resident today fears his garden could be used as a footpath to more than 40 new flats.

Mick Keeble, of Cattsfield, claims a new £3.2 million state-of-the-art housing project in the village could lead to people walking straight through his garden to the get to it.

The sheltered accommodation in Bentley Lane, which will offer 38 flats for older people and nine flats specially designed for people with dementia.

The developer, Housing 21 – in partnership with Babergh district council and Suffolk County Council – was given planning permission provided it met some preconditions.


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But Mr Keeble said: "The building should not have actually started yet as preconditions have not been met. The landscaping has not been approved and they want to come through our garden as they claim there is already a footpath there."

"We have been under constant pressure since we first became aware of this which intensified since building commenced in November."

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"A contractor for the county council walked across our garden though a fence marked private property with the intention of cutting our holly trees with a power tool."

At the first public meeting in February 2001 a footpath was planned to go through nearby allotments. But it was also discussed that it could go through Mr Keeble's land.

In January 2002 Babergh approved the plans with the footpath crossing the garden.

After some research, Mr Keeble discovered that there was a path there and applied to have it deleted on the grounds that it had been included in error.

He said: "Our researchers have discovered no evidence that a footpath ever existed along our garden.

"We have supplied 100 pages of historical evidence and witness statements from over the last 70 years to support our application."

Sandra Graffham from Suffolk County Council said: "A condition on the planning application for the sheltered housing scheme requires improvements to the footpath so that residents can have safe access to the village shop and other facilities."

She said the council was investigating Mr Keeble's claim that the footpath should be deleted and the matter will be discussed at the Rights of Way sub-committee in December.

However councillors have been recommended to refuse his plea, but change the map so the footpath's exact route can be seen.

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