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Bury St Edmunds tenants in controversial eco-apartments to be rehomed while improvements made to building

Housing association tenants in a controversial eco-friendly apartment block in Bury St Edmunds are to be rehomed while improvements are made to the building.

Havebury Housing says a survey identified the need for a range of improvements to the award-winning 10-year-old Goodfellows development, in Kings Road/Parkway.

Tenants in the 12 flats will be moving over the coming months and the housing association is holding meetings with each household to discuss their needs.

Goodfellows, in Kings Road, Bury St Edmunds
Goodfellows, in Kings Road, Bury St Edmunds

Havebury has refuted rumours on social media that the building is to be pulled down.

Chief executive Andrew Smith said: “There is no plan to demolish the building, only to carry out a range of improvements, however our priority is always the wellbeing of our tenants.

"These works are expected to be disruptive and after carefully considering the options we felt the best solution was to vacate the building.

“We understand that moving home can be stressful and we are providing dedicated liaison advisers who have met with each household individually to ensure we fully understand their needs, assist with the practicalities and give them the widest possible choice of alternative accommodation.

"Havebury will be meeting all removal costs and each household will be entitled to a home‐loss payment.”

Asked about the improvements, Havebury said it would be carrying out 'routine maintenance work' and due to the building's design it is likely they will have to remove the windows, doors and staircases to do so.

With its timber construction and wisteria and clematis shrubs growing up the building's steel wires, Goodfellows won a RIBA East Sustainability Award and Suffolk Association of Architects Design Award in 2009.

However, the development has attracted criticism over the years for its appearance.

According to historian Martyn Taylor, Goodfellow was the surname of the family who lived at number 141 Kings Road, which was demolished to make way for the flats.