Trimley rumours denied

RUMOURS that a major housing developer is investigating purchase of a field which keeps the historic twin Trimley villages separate were today hotly denied.

RUMOURS that a major housing developer is investigating purchase of a field which keeps the historic twin Trimley villages separate were today hotly denied.

Villagers were told by men seen walking and surveying the land they were from Persimmon Homes and looking at the possibility of putting homes on it.

But a spokeswoman for the company today said its officials were not interested in any potential housing sites in the villages.

The field in Thurmans Lane, Trimley St Mary, is one of eight parcels of land managed by the Limes and Grange Estate Trustees for the Stennett farming family and which the trust has identified for possible housing.

There have been attempts in the past to develop the site - which already has a ready-made access from the huge Farmlands estate - but villagers have successfully fought them, claiming the field is one of two which keep Trimley St Martin and Trimley St Martin as separate communities.

Last year councillors were told the trustees were working with landowners Trinity College after the university's agents included the trust's land in the vision to turn the Trimleys into a new town. Negotiations were said to be taking place over a possible financial settlement.

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However, Trinity College is currently revising its proposals.

Trinity's senior bursar Dr Jeremy Fairbrother was very impressed with the contribution of the Thurmans and Church Lane fields to the rural nature of the villages and it may be these have now been removed from the college's plans.

A spokeswoman for Persimmon said: "It is a bit of a mystery really, but as far as we are aware no-one from Persimmon has been surveying or looking at land in Trimley St Mary."

The company is currently developing more than 250 sites across the UK and is interested in greenfield or brownfield sites, with or without planning permission, which landowners are interested in selling.

Meanwhile, villagers are gearing themselves up for the next stage in their battle to prevent major development - a fight which is far from over.

Ian Cowan, spokesman for campaign group STAG, appealed for supporters who had been involved at the start of the fight to get in touch via the website so information gathered could now be collated.

The number of active supporters had dropped but there was a need for a fresh impetus as Suffolk Coastal is preparing to release its Local Plan.

"Perhaps people thought we were not doing enough. Maybe they concluded that there was no point fighting someone as powerful as Trinity College. It could be they believed the issue had died a death," said Mr Cowan.

"The fact is that the problem is still very much alive and kicking.

"The revised Local Plan will be published soon, in which it is expected the number of houses to be built in the area will be announced. STAG then expect Trinity College to make a move shortly thereafter. To counter their proposals STAG needs to be prepared."

There was a need to now draw together contact lists, research notes, survey conclusions, and reports on specific matters.