Council slams stable plans

A scheme to transform the rundown stables which were once home to the horses used to deliver barrels of Adnams beer around Southwold have been slammed by the town council.

A scheme to transform the rundown stables which were once home to the horses used to deliver barrels of Adnams beer around Southwold have been slammed by the town council.

About 40 people turned out for a meeting on Tuesday evening to discuss proposals to convert the old Child's Yard buildings into a complex of shops and apartments.

The scheme would see most of the old Child's Foundry buildings demolished because they are not structurally sound. The former stables and foundry would then be converted into two houses, four apartments, a caf� and nine retail units around a narrow walkway linking Mill Lane to the Market Place.

The foundry, in Child's Yard behind the Market Place, was set up by Edmund Child, who was born in Yarmouth in the early 1800s. The Adnams brewery later bought part of the site and converted the buildings into stables for their delivery horses, which were used to transport beer around the seaside town until September 2006.


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Suffolk-based developer Hopkins Homes submitted the plans just before Christmas and on Tuesday night, the company's planning manager Robert Eburne gave a presentation to the town council and locals.

He said: 'The key feature of the scheme is to try and recreate the historic connection between Mill Lane and Market Place to allow for a more vibrant centre for people to walk through.'

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He said that timbers from a shipwreck which were used to build part of the old foundry buildings will be reused in the new development.

But Southwold's policy and finance committee voted unanimously to refuse the scheme after listening to objections from members of the public about parking, increased amounts of traffic and the fact that historic buildings would be demolished to make way for the scheme.

Town councillor John Windell said: 'We feel overall that this is overdevelopment. We are looking about an eight metre high skyline on most of these buildings.

'We were extremely unhappy with the whole question of access. There has not been any thought given to the idea of vans going into this small courtyard for deliveries. We're also disappointed that no thought seems to have been given to parking.'

Geraldine Bryant said: 'What distresses me most is that within Waveney the different towns have got their own characters. Southwold is often seen as the jewel in Waveney's crown but the way things are going at the moment, we are just becoming an echo of the other towns. We are totally and utterly losing out character.'

Southwold resident Gill Gilbert said: 'It could be absolutely wonderful and a real asset to the town, but instead they want to cram in as many little units as they can.'

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