Trimley scheme 'greed' say residents

LANDOWNERS are today taking a fresh look at their vision to swamp the Trimley villages with thousands of homes – but have not promised to change it.Residents branded the project "greed not need" which would ruin the rural community and send thousands of more cars onto its roads.

LANDOWNERS are today taking a fresh look at their vision to swamp the Trimley villages with thousands of homes – but have not promised to change it.

Residents branded the project "greed not need" which would ruin the rural community and send thousands of more cars onto its roads.

Suffolk Coastal MP John Gummer said Trinity College's controversial proposals for up to 3,000 homes were against national policy.

He said all available brownfield sites – land previously used for other purposes – must be used before greenfield ones are even considered for development.

More than 200 residents packed into Trimley St Mary primary school's hall last night for the latest public meeting about the long-term vision for the villages.

Dr Jeremy Fairbrother, senior bursar of the landowning Cambridge college, and Tim Collins, a partner in agents Bidwells, faced tough questions as they defended the suggested development project.

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Mr Gummer said "My own view is that what the parish council is suggesting is acceptable, that it is possible to have some small growth to meet the immediate needs of the villages.

"It does seem to be contrary to national policy to seek to build here anything like the extent that is being proposed. I think we ought to say quite clearly that we do not want it and we have to argue it from a national point of view."

Suffolk Coastal would understand why it was important to keep Trimley St Mary and Trimley St Martin separate, and why people did not want to be part of one linear city stretching from Ipswich.

But if the proposals went before a planning inspector and then the office of deputy prime minister John Prescott, those people would not understand so readily and so villagers needed proper policy arguments.

"If you don't insist that building takes place on the brownfield sites, no-one will build on the brownfield sites because it's much easier to build on greenfield sites. The land we want used first is the land we have been using – use the land that is already spoilt and don't take land which has not been spoilt," said Mr Gummer.

Trinity College has submitted its vision, which envisages building homes, village greens and centres, industrial areas and a new school on every spare field between the A14 and railway line, as part of the local plan review.

Suffolk Coastal has identified a need for 1,872 affordable homes in the Felixstowe area – but as they form only 30pc of any development, it would mean more than 5,000 properties being built to gain them.

Asked what would happen now, Dr Fairbrother said: "We will take on board the comments from Trimley St Mary and Trimley St Martin, confer and decide what to do next."

Mr Collins said the whole Felixstowe peninsula had been studied to identify where growth could take place.

"It is very upsetting when you see it in detail, but people would want the detail and we would be damned if we do and damned if we don't," he added.

WEBLINKS: www.savetrimley.co.uk

www.trimley-vision.co.uk

www.trimley-st-martin.org.uk

n What do you think? Write to Your Letters, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

Opinion see page 6

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