Village gets £4m in homes deals

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CONTRACTORS have contributed £4 million during a village’s transformation, a council has revealed.

More than 1,500 homes have been built in Red Lodge in the last six years, with more to be completed imminently.

As part of deals to build the new homes, contractors’ Section 106 agreements -– pledges of cash in return for permitting development – have totalled more than £4 million, according to a report released by Forest Heath District Council.

Contributions include £760,940 for public transport, £2.3 million towards the new St Christopher Primary School and £336,000 towards a new community centre.

Lisa Chambers, Suffolk county councillor for Red Lodge, said the money was a key factor in making the village a cohesive community.

“I think when there is such a huge amount of work going on you need the Section 106 money.

“Although I would have had a bit more focused on the community, overall I think it has been spent well,” she said.

Cllr Chambers added that Red Lodge had been ‘incredibly lucky’ with the money as it had saved a large amount of the village’s public transport system.

The council’s report – to be discussed by members today – states that more than £550,000 of the money received is yet to be spent.

That includes £500,000 yet to be used for public transport and £60,000 to improve the Fiveways roundabout.

Around £200,000 has been set aside for two community workers in the village – a community development officer and a development monitoring officer.

Just under £200,000 has been allocated for play areas.