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Fresh hope for campaigners

PUBLISHED: 17:13 23 October 2008 | UPDATED: 21:36 05 July 2010

FAMILIES fighting controversial plans to open a special school unit near their homes in Lowestoft were given fresh hope today after councillors put off making a decision so they can visit the site.

FAMILIES fighting controversial plans to open a special school unit near their homes in Lowestoft were given fresh hope today after councillors put off making a decision so they can visit the site.

Members of Suffolk County Council's development control committee went against planning officers' recommendation that they should approve the proposals for a new £1.7m pupil referral unit (PRU), off Saturn Close in the north of the town.

Protesters spoke of their delight following the unanimous vote to defer the matter for a site visit and revealed they now had the backing of a wealthy businessman, who has pledged to bankroll a legal challenge should the plans be given the go-ahead.

The county council's education bosses want to build a new PRU for youngsters with emotional or behavioural problems on a section of playing field belonging to Harris Middle School.

Protest leaders, who submitted a 180-signature petition against the plans, have been at pains to insist their campaign is largely centred on the loss of open space and the increase in traffic, and not about fears over the behaviour of pupils.

Full details are in this week's Lowestoft Journal.

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