Disruption could last for a decade
The first reserve matters application for Chilton Woods was heard on Wednesday.
Readers may be interested to understand, or somewhat confused about, the objections from surrounding parishes.
As the ward member for Lavenham, I represent the largest parish land mass for the site, Chilton, as well as Great and Little Waldingfield and Lavenham.
These parishes fear the construction route will be pushed through their villages, along roads that are currently unsuitable for heavy good vehicles, as well as bringing continuous noise, dust, pollution and disturbance to residents.
It must be remembered the site will take a minimum of a decade to build out, meaning at least 10 years of disruption.
The most sensible, sustainable and satisfactory route for haul/construction traffic for Chilton Woods is for a new entrance to the site off the A134, which would take all heavy traffic away from villages and residents, along the lower part of the Sudbury bypass and then on to the Melford bypass.
It must be remembered that we are talking of 40 HGVs per day, which will make a severe impact on the amenity value of residents’ property and private life if these vehicles are allowed to negotiate any other highway.
The county council is the vendor of this site and must make the right decision on this subject, alongside Babergh District Council as the local planning authority, to promote council objectives of the right development in the right place.
Local parishes objected to the lack of detail for a haul/construction route for the site within the reserved matter application.
The planning committee listened, heard and recommended that the haul/construction route be taken back to the planning committee for judgement on its soundness of route and detail due to local parish collaboration.
Ward member for Lavenham
Babergh District Council
Clay Hall Lane, Acton
Circus show left me feeling vindicated
Last week’s Sudbury Town Council meeting was a joy to behold and was worthy of going global.
I must say, they really know how to abuse the delegated powers from Suffolk County Council.
The traffic orders to close roads in order to facilitate social distancing in March were a complete overreaction. If they were to have any tangible effect, all car parks needed to be closed.
The councillors voted to remove restrictions from North Street from the end of this month, but retain them on Market Hill until September – all so that two businesses could have some outdoor seating, meaning the interests of so many other business were totally ignored.
One councillor, Oliver Forder, told the meeting that the public don’t want to eat out, yet voted in favour of keeping the restrictions.
Two councillors, Steve Hall and Louise Fowler, made some very good points; namely that if they agree to remove the barrier in North Street, they should be consistent and do the same on Market Hill.
According to Jan Osborne and Robert Spivey, that action would be too soon and could lead to a spike in Covid-19 cases, but where is the evidence for this?
So, once again, the town council is putting the beating heart of Sudbury’s retail business at risk through very ill-informed reasons.
I am sorry I had to resign from the council last year, but watching last week’s circus made me feel vindicated.
Dispensing with old boys club overdue
I am in complete agreement with Alan Pitt and his letter concerning Tim Passmore (Suffolk Free Press, March 11).
Indeed, it should refer to the other 40 police and crime commissioners in the UK. Not only do they have the salaries Mr Pitt mentioned but they have an assistant on about £50,000 or more – and they get expenses on top.
Get more bobbies on the street and dispense with David Cameron’s old boys club.
Give power to truly elected local people
We need to reject Babergh and return to a form of Sudbury Borough Council.
It has been clear for quite some time that our system of local government is not fit for purpose. Our parish councils have little power or resources, Babergh district is too spread out geographically and cares little for Sudbury and Suffolk county council is Ipswich centric. Sudbury and the surrounding area is often forgotten or ignored and it’s time that changed.
We need to return to a form of Sudbury Borough Council which would give power to truly local elected people. Babergh goes from Glemsford to Shotley and East Bergholt to Cockfield; it cannot serve everybody effectively. The east of the district wants to merge with Mid Suffolk, introduce car parking charges and be based in Ipswich. So let them. Here in the Sudbury area, we need and want none of that. We want to choose our own path; free parking, a local council which residents can access, local people making decisions that are in the best interest of the town and surrounding area.
A Sudbury borough council would mean replacing Babergh with a local council that had district powers and responsibilities and possibly some county ones too in order to reduce the layers of bureaucracy in local government . It could include Sudbury and all the surrounding parishes such as Great and Little Cornard, Chilton, Acton, the Waldingfields, Long Melford and Glemsford. Like we had until 1974.
Planning for new houses, delivering services, supporting businesses and jobs - this would all be local, democratic and made with Sudbury’s best interests at heart. Right now, what Sudbury and the surrounding villages wants matters little as the vast majority of councillors come from elsewhere; some an hour or more drive away. It’s time that elected locals from in and around Sudbury made the decisions for our community not those on the coast or in Ipswich.
To be honest, Babergh and its leadership has failed to deliver for our community and failed to represent our interests.
But it doesn’t matter who we elect to represent us as at Babergh as we are outnumbered by those who care little for the Sudbury area. What do they care for our success? They gravitate to Ipswich or Colchester. It’s time we focused on Sudbury and the surrounding villages.
They say that a smaller more local council would not raise the funds for investment. I disagree. They haven’t delivered a bypass, the bus station is still a wasteland and Belle Vue park has been left to rot and deteriorate. Instead our money is siphoned off to spend on investments out of county on retail in Milton Keynes or Basildon. Any money raised by Sudbury borough council would be spent in the Sudbury borough.
I do not have all the answers. We can work together as a community, across the political spectrum, to bring about a better, more local democracy. I would be interested in people’s thoughts and opinions. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Kings Street, Sudbury
Why are we still felling mature trees?
We would like to make your readers aware that we have a number of young trees available to plant around the Sudbury area.
These have been provided by the Suffolk Tree Wardens Network. If anyone knows of an area that would benefit from one of these young trees, please contact Sudbury Town Council (01787 275767) and we will try to get permission from the appropriate authority to plant.
We have already planted 15 new trees on waste land in the old Acton Lane area.
It is good to see so much new planting going on, but, sadly, it in no way makes up for the number of large mature trees that are being felled, along with the attendant ivy, which so precious for insects and bird life.
This is happening especially in the east ward for various reasons.
Daily, we are told of the state of our environment and yet we still go on felling and, in some cases, burning these precious assets, which give us oxygen, reduce our carbon and give habitat to our ever-decreasing wildlife.
I have noticed that where trees are felled, a large amount of bramble and ivy is destroyed.
These may not appear to be the most desirable of God’s creations to preserve, but they support an inordinate amount of insects and butterflies, which in turn supplies food for the birds.
Sadly, this is often carried out by people who profess to know better.
Jill Fisher and Janis Bear
Sudbury tree wardens
Encourage people to come back to town
Well at least there are some councillors on Sudbury Town Council that are prepared to listen to common sense and remove the overkill barriers in North Street to encourage back customers, and re-introduce parking spaces, because this was causing loss of business to the traders of the town’s North Street.
But to continue with the barriers on the Market Hill under the pretext of Covid-19 when we all know that things are improving and vaccination take up is high, this is just an excuse because we all know this has always been the blind obsession, mad ambition and intention of some town councillors to pedestrianise, ban/remove all parking on Market Hill.
As for the argument that we need to encourage a café culture society where people could sit outside to eat and drink, we could make use of the ample space in front of St Peter’s Church.
We should be encouraging people to come in from the surrounding villages to support and use our shops (they certainly need help) while providing the reinstatement of convenient parking, but once again they’re being actively ignored and discouraged by certain town councillors.