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Elmsett near Hadleigh to get 44 new homes as Babergh councillors approve application despite concerns

A 44-home development near Hadleigh has been approved by Babergh District Council, despite concerns about parking, environmental impact and flooding.

Babergh District Council’s planning committee today voted unanimously to approve the development of 44 homes on the land east of Hadleigh Road in Elmsett, in-line with officer’s recommendations.

Approval of the full planning application follows the 2018 decision to grant outline planning permission for 41 houses in the same area.

Leigh Jamieson, Green group leader and South East Cosford ward councillor at Babergh District Council. Picture: Babergh District Council
Leigh Jamieson, Green group leader and South East Cosford ward councillor at Babergh District Council. Picture: Babergh District Council

As well as adding three homes, the site layout has been changed – including by setting back the proposed dwellings from the highway to provide a landscape frontage.

Green Party councillor Leigh Jamieson said: “This development is much nicer than the previous one.

“The applicant seems to have taken on board most of the points raised by councillors about the previous application.

Michael Holt
Michael Holt

“I’m a bit disappointed there are no solar panels in the plans, which would help with the rise in heating bills in the future.”

The environmental measures by applicant Denbury Homes include using low carbon technology to ensure homes keep the heat in, using sustainable materials, sourcing these materials nearby when logical, and making all inside lights and street lights outside energy efficient.

Independent councillor John Hinton said: “There are 121 bedrooms across all the houses, and only 114 parking spaces. This could leave us short of room for all cars.”

Alongside the 114 parking spaces for homes, the applicant explained there would be a further nine visitor parking spaces.

Yesterday’s approval of Babergh’s 20-year parking strategy by the council’s cabinet put parking high on councillors’ agenda for this application.

Conservative councillor Michael Holt said: “We don’t want to create problems for our residents, and this is going to do so for residents on Hadleigh Road.”

“The entrance to the proposed site is in front of the only properties along that road that don’t have their own parking spaces.

“So, we’re going to create a problem for at least three properties that currently use the road to park.

“It isn’t the developers’ responsibility to resolve parking on Hadleigh Road, but what they are doing is creating a problem that wasn’t there before.”

Of the 44 houses proposed, 15 would be designated as ‘affordable’ – typically meaning they are at least 20% below local market rents.

A reserved matters application for the 41 properties approved in 2018 was set to be discussed today but withdrawn before the meeting.

Officers had recommended refusal for the reserved matters application, on the basis of lack of detail around flood risk and surface water drainage.

Fear of flooding was brought up statements by residents objecting to the application approved today.

The proposed site is at risk of surface water flooding but has the lowest risk when compared to the surrounding areas, according to the officers’ report.

Officers also believe the proposed surface water drainage scheme in the application approved today would manage surface water run-off.

Suffolk County Council’s Lead Local Flood Authority submitted a holding objection in April but now recommends approval subject to conditions, having gained further information from the applicant.