Planning anger of Lakenheath land owner
The part owner of a site for 67 homes has urged Lakenheath Parish Council to stop blocking developments it has approved.
Farmer Stephen Palmer owns a third of a site off Briscoe Way in the village which the parish council said in December 2013 that it ‘did not object to’.
But in May 2014 it wrote to Forest Heath District Council warning of legal action if the application was approved because it sought a study of the combined impact of the, by then, several applications for more housing in the village.
In January this year the Briscoe Way development was one of seven, totalling 1,663 houses and a school, listed in a six page barrister’s letter to Forest Heath, on the parish council’s behalf, citing a ‘flawed transport assessment’ and the need for an environmental impact assessment among 27 issues raised over the combined plans.
Mr Palmer said on Monday: “It’s annoying – Lakenheath said it had no objection, but they’re now lumping it with all the others.
“They seem to want everything to stop in Lakenheath.
“I think they should have supported the sites which are OK and objected to those that aren’t”
Mr Palmer, who has lived in Lakenheath for 64 years said the fact that applications for so many homes had been put in did not mean they were all going to be built.
Hermione Brown, chairwoman of Lakenheath Parish Council’s planning sub-committee, said: “I feel sorry for Stephen because he was the first of the sites and we liked it but then we got hit by all the others.”
She said a traffic assessment had been done, but it only covered three of the seven sites.
She added that the Briscoe Way development could not be treated alone because it would exit onto Station Road only about 400 metres from an 81-house development at Rabbit Hill, as would a 375 house development, plus school, at Station Road North.
Writing in a parish newsletter on the combined impact, she said: “The Parish Council believes strongly that any development of this magnitude needs to be preceded by a full evaluation of the infrastructure and environmental impacts rather than allowing each development to be decided individually, without taking account of the bigger picture.”