Plans for 44 homes submitted for Elmswell farmland

The development site in Elmswell, east of Warren Lane and west of Cresmedow Way 

The development site in Elmswell, east of Warren Lane and west of Cresmedow Way - Credit: Google

Plans for 44 homes on agricultural land on the edge of Elmswell have been put forward.

The application for the site east of Warren Lane and west of Cresmedow Way has been submitted by the landowner, JD and RJ Baker Farms Ltd.

There is already outline planning permission there for 38 homes, but the new application seeks "to improve the outlook for adjoining residents, whilst improving the housing layout and housing offer".

Planning agent James Bailey said in a letter with the application: "At the same time, we have also sought to enhance the wider landscaping, and we are also offering a better SuDS [sustainable drainage systems] solution than was originally proposed."

The site is east of Warren Lane

The site is east of Warren Lane - Credit: Google

The plans for the 2.88 hectare site include nine bungalows and up to 15 affordable homes (35%), open space, landscaping, and associated infrastructure. 

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The site is bounded to the north, east and west by residential properties, to the south-east by woodland, and to the south and south-west by agricultural land.

Elmswell resident Jen Tooke-Marchant, who lives off Warren Lane, has concerns over the impact of the development on wildlife, adding: "They are going to put something on there [the site], but I want proper mitigation factors for the wildlife."

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She said the habitat surveys were out-of-date, having taken place in June 2016 and February 2021, and questioned some of the contents of the report, including where it said "no trees within the site were recorded as having the potential to support roosting bats".

The ecological report concluded "there are not considered to be any significant adverse effects on any statutory or non-statutory sites of nature conservation interest from any development proposals".

It also recommended an updated badger survey is conducted before any building works are started, and other recommendations include bird boxes.

Mrs Tooke-Marchant also said Warren Lane -  mainly a country road - is unsuitable for increased traffic, but a transport statement with the plans said improvements to the road had already been agreed as part of the 2018 application.

Access to the new development would be from Warren Lane.

Mrs Tooke-Marchant said it was "disappointing" to see another housing development coming forward when Elmswell has already had so many.

A planning statement with the application said: "The delivery of new homes on a site previously identified by the council as being suitable and sustainable will enable more people to find the homes they need, both in pure numerical terms but also through providing a wider choice of house types, sizes and location. 

"This application site could deliver housing which would make a valuable contribution towards providing much-needed housing that is deliverable now, including fulfilling a demand locally in Elmswell."

Suffolk County Council flood and water management has issued a holding objection to the plans, saying a full above ground open SuDs system should be used, unless there is clear evidence why this is not appropriate for this site due to site constraints.

Also, children's play provision is being sought as part of the planned open space, or a contribution to enhance existing play facilities off-site.

Dave Hughes, a Public Realm officer for Mid Suffolk District Council, said Elmswell currently has a deficit in child play provision when compared to local standards and there isn't a play area near the site.

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