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Traveller family apply for permanent six caravan residential site in Lakenheath

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An application has been submitted for a permanent traveller site on land in Lakenheath.

The application to West Suffolk Council has been submitted on behalf of a traveller family who already live on, and own the site, south west of Sedge Fen Road.

The application asks for a change of use from greenfield site to a residential caravan site for six gypsy families, including the siting of six caravan pitches, six amenity buildings, hardstandings, and associated landscaping, at Highbridge Gravel Drove, Sharpe’s Corner, Sedge Fen, Lakenheath.

The proposed layout of the traveller site. Image Cheffins/West Suffolk Council
The proposed layout of the traveller site. Image Cheffins/West Suffolk Council

According to the planning statement, submitted by Cheffins Planning on behalf of the family, each of the six pitches would comprise of one static caravan and one amenity building. Space will also be provided for touring caravans.

The application states: "The applicant and his family already live on the site in mobile caravans.

"The group are related to each other and all of them have strong links to Lakenheath with many family members living in the local area.

"The applicant and their family used to tour their caravans but are unable to afford paying for camp sites all year round to pitch their tourers. The applicant purchased the site on May 28 2018 to provide their family with a permanent place to reside so their children can attend school.

"The proposal is for the change of use of land to six gypsy/traveller pitches for the applicant and his family."

The land measures 0.7a hectares, and includes the access track to the site.

It is mostly open in nature with some soft landscaping along the southern boundary.

The site is bounded by open countryside to the south, west and north, residential development to the east which is

separated by the Cut off Channel.

At present, the site currently comprises an existing timber outbuilding which is used as a store, timber fences around the perimeter of the site and six caravans.

The planning statement adds: "The applicant has also stated that they will continue to have touring caravans on the site, thus demonstrating the intention to continue to travel in the future."