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Flagship Housing's plans to demolish hundreds of garages in Mildenhall closes to make way for housing resubmitted to West Suffolk District Council

Controversial plans to demolish hundreds of garages in Mildenhall to make way for new homes have been resubmitted after being refused last year.

Flagship Housing submitted four separate applications to West Suffolk District Council last month for sites in Downing Close, Emmanuel Close, Pembroke Close and Newnham Close in the town.

The previous application also included Peterhouse Close but the planning statement submitted as part of the new plans said that a ‘resolution to parking shortfalls associated with the Peterhouse Close proposals is still being explored and this site has therefore been omitted from the current proposals’.

The locations of the garage blocks Flagship seek to redevelope for housing.. (8673828)
The locations of the garage blocks Flagship seek to redevelope for housing.. (8673828)

Combined, the four applications would see 30 homes, all of which would be affordable, built in place of 212 garages.

Six homes and 35 parking spaces would be built in Downing Close, 11 homes and 57 spaces in Emmanuel Close, seven homes and 45 spaces in Pembroke Close and six homes and 30 spaces in Newnham Close.

The planning statement said that the demand for garages had ‘fallen’ resulting in ‘numerous vacant garages across the sites, some in poor condition’.

It added: “The proposed redevelopment provides an opportunity to enhance the appearance of the area, and to build more affordable homes for local people.”

But residents, who strongly opposed the plans when they were first submitted, have expressed concerns about what impact the new homes could have on the area.

In a letter submitted to the council, Ralph Shingfield, of Pembroke Close, said parking on the site would ‘only get worse’ if plans were given the go ahead.

He added: “Flagship should put current residents first and not just think how they can make more money.”

Maria Gomez, of Downing Close, also raised concern about the houses which are ‘much larger in size, higher elevation, and a completely different construction style and appearance to the existing ones’.

She said: “This will create a further sense of overcrowding on the site, adding to the psychological distress that the reduction of open spaces and parking will have on the community.”

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