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Residents oppose caravan park plan

PUBLISHED: 15:50 24 July 2008 | UPDATED: 07:32 01 August 2010

A PROPOSED caravan park for a tiny village near Halesworth has been met with opposition by virtually every household.

Local couple John and Diana Bettinson want to transform the equestrian centre at Grove Farm, Linstead Magna, into a holiday park, boasting 59 static caravan units, 17 touring units, tent area, reception, toilet blocks and landscaping.

A PROPOSED caravan park for a tiny village near Halesworth has been met with opposition by virtually every household.

Local couple John and Diana Bettinson want to transform the equestrian centre at Grove Farm, Linstead Magna, into a holiday park, boasting 59 static caravan units, 17 touring units, tent area, reception, toilet blocks and landscaping.

There are currently 40 houses in the village and out of 32 homes consulted, 28 have responded against the proposal, while more than 70 people have signed a petition opposing it.

A special meeting of Chediston and Linstead Parish Council earlier this month attracted around 35 people concerned that the site could be used for up to 11 months of the year.

Other issues included traffic, lack of amenities in the area, problems with flood and light and noise pollution.

Agent Len Gooch has already stated that apart from the entrance to the site, the county surveyor had raised no issues regarding traffic.

After the meeting Mr Bettinson said they were expecting some hostility, but not quite what they experienced.

He said they were committed to the project and will be talking again with the district council about finding a way

forward.

Graham Downing, chairman of the parish council said they had lodged an objection against the plans after hearing from both sides.

Mr Downing said they had visited and studied the site in great detail before they held the public meeting.

“After the public meeting we had a closed meeting and we considered all sides before deciding on balance to lodge an objection. We had to take into account the very strong views being expressed by residents.

“The matter of drainage they were particularly concerned about such as the quantity of foul water way in which it was being treated and discharged into surrounding fields, drains and ditches, which wasn't answered at the time by the applicants. There was also the issue of traffic on the road.

“Linstead Magna and Linstead Parva are very small and dispersed. We are talking about a very small population potentially creating a new village in the middle of that area.”

In a letter to The Journal Roz Fallon, who doesn't live in Linstead Magna said she couldn't understand the reasons put forward by local people against the plans as the site will bring holiday makers to the area who will spend money in local towns and attractions, providing employment for the area and a much needed boost to the economy.

“I also drive these local roads on a regular basis, taking children to Chediston, and meet all manner of vehicles, large and small, all of which have no difficulty negotiating the bends.

“I feel, reading between the lines, that the opposers to this scheme are clutching at straws with their concerns and are being blinkered to what a boon to the area this could be,” she said.

A spokesman for Suffolk Coastal District Council said the petitions will be included as part of the consultation, which will probably be considered towards the end of August.

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