Large loss of woodland for North East Haverhill is ‘totally unjustified’

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A campaigner has asked Haverhill Town Council and each councillor to object to the ‘grossly excessive’ proposed demolition of 1,660 square metres of woodland included in the planning application for the Great Wilsey Park development.

Ian Johnson, of Marcus Close, who represents 350 people opposed to the proposals, also wants the council and councillors to object to the planned location of a traffic light controlled access road to the new 2,500 property estate and the access road to what will be a new country park off Coupals Road.

Speaking at the town council meeting on Monday, Mr Johnson said: “The plan proposes to demolish 1,660 square metres of woodland abutting the green area between the Wilsey (estate) and Roman Way.

“This breaks up the integral nature of a tree belt which has a pleasing and aesthetic visual character,and encloses the green lane we have been seeking to protect.

“The area of tree removal is grossly excessive and totally unjustified in relation to its stated purpose of providing access for a footpath (over 300 square metres more extensive than they allow for a road in the same plans).

“This is against the principle of Vision 2031 which accepted that the tree belts would be preserved wherever possible and enhanced.

“Also against this principle is the demolition of 1 square hectare of the tree belt for housing. Never in any of the consultation on vision 2031 was there a proposal to substitute housing for woodland.”

He also asked for the traffic light controlled access road proposed near Gannet Close on Chalkstone Way to instead by moved, ‘for safety and traffic flow reasons’ to opposite the Millfields Way.

Mr Johnson also said the proposed access road to the country park off Coupals Road is just below the brow of the hill, close to a single track bridge in the dip and should be moved as It has been ‘the site of accidents over a number of years’.

Cllr John Burns said the deadline for the public consultation period for the outline planning application currently with St Edmundsbury Council has been put back to January 31 and the town council has until January 18 to comment.