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More than 800 residents answer survey on Stowmarket and Onehouse boundary row at Mill Grove 446-home development





More than 800 residents have made their views known in a survey regarding a controversial boundary dispute.

Mill Grove is a 446-home development in Union Road between Stowmarket and Onehouse and it has been the subject of a major boundary row between Stowmarket Town Council and Onehouse Parish Council for years.

The housing estate is within the Onehouse boundary and has introduced approximately 1,053 new residents – more than doubling the village’s population.

Mill Grove residents came together to share their views on the boundary dispute last June. Picture: Rich Marsham
Mill Grove residents came together to share their views on the boundary dispute last June. Picture: Rich Marsham
The location of the Mill Grove estate. Picture: Stowmarket Town Council
The location of the Mill Grove estate. Picture: Stowmarket Town Council

Stowmarket Town councillors shared their frustrations in May 2023 and considered taking legal action as it was believed Stowmarket would miss out on £1 million worth of Council Tax and CIL (Community Infrastructure Levy) funding over the course of 10 years if the boundary is not changed.

Seventeen of the estate’s residents came together a month later to voice their concerns to SuffolkNews as they feared their village could be ‘swallowed up’ by the neighbouring town.

Following further consultation by Mid Suffolk District Council, 73 per cent of 848 survey responses agreed they wanted to keep the boundary line where it is to ensure Mill Grove would remain a part of Onehouse.

Seventy three per cent of responses agreed to keep the boundary line where it is. Picture: Rich Marsham
Seventy three per cent of responses agreed to keep the boundary line where it is. Picture: Rich Marsham

The two main reasons behind residents’ decision was that Stowmarket is big enough and would be encroaching into the smaller village.

They also felt the area and its residents have a strong community identity linked with Onehouse.

Joanne Copping, Onehouse chairman, said: “We are pleased that residents, on both sides of the boundary, have had a fair opportunity to voice their opinions.

“Given the responses to the consultation from residents, I think we were justified in pushing for the boundary to be retained unchanged.

“It has been heart-warming to see the comments on just how cherished our parish is by it’s residents.”

Stowmarket Town Council has been approached for a comment. Picture: Mark Westley
Stowmarket Town Council has been approached for a comment. Picture: Mark Westley

The next steps of the Onehouse and Stowmarket Community Governance Review is for Mid Suffolk District Council to host a debate between both parties before a final recommendation is made.

This debate is expected to take place during the full council meeting in April to give both councils a fair chance to voice their opinions and concerns.

The decision from this meeting will be published for more consultation from residents before a final decision is made by Mid Suffolk in June.

Stowmarket Town Council was approached for comment regarding the survey results.