A country park for Haverhill and a north west relief road came a step nearer this week when planning inspector Roger Clews proposed modifications to the Vision 2031 plan.
Most of the inspector’s propsals have been welcomed by the town’s mayor Councillor Roger André.
Now it is up to the public to submit views on the modifications as a seven-week consultation starts. The findings came after Mr Clews heard a representations at an eight day public hearing.
The main modifications include an option for a country or community park to be inserted into the Haverhill plan and a north west relief road between Wratting and Withersfield roads, which would be required for a proposed housing development.
Cllr André told the Echo: “We are delighted that the inspector has listened carefully to what the town council has said and many of our hopes have been included in the modifications.
“A country park would safeguard the wildlife corridor between Sturmer and Haverhill which would have been under threat by any road development.
“However we are disappointed that the inspector has not included using the land at Bumpstead Road for housing, rather than business. Carisbrooke Investments has an application for 200 houses and we are in urgent need of low-cost housing.
“This could have happened in the next year.”
This view is not shared by Cllr Tony Brown for the borough and county councils who said he was delighted that the land be protected for future employment.
Also not included was the former Karro Group employment site in Wratting for housing but allotments in Duddery Hill could be used for education.
Cllr John Griffiths, leader of St Edmundsbury Borough Council said: “Vision 2031 is a comprehensive plan to help the borough to manage change over the coming years.
“We need it both to protect our way of life, wonderful heritage and environment, and to ensure our future prosperity with the right kind of desirable development, alongside the necessary safeguards and infrastructure.”
The public are invited to comment on the changes in an online consultation lasting seven weeks, between now and May 30. Go to http://www.stedmundsbury.gov.uk/planning-and-building-control/sebc-planning-policy-section/Vision-2031-Examination.cfm