There has been a host of objections from people over new plans to create a petrol filling station, a drive-thru restaurant and coffee shop in Elmswell.
The scheme submitted to Mid Suffolk District Council planners would be situated in Kiln Lane next to the A14 and would include more than 60 parking spaces.
A planning statement by James Bailey Planning said: “There is a notable shortage of roadside services along this section of the A14, and when taking into account recent developments – primarily new housing – that have been granted permission, there is a clear need for such key roadside services/infrastructure to support the local growing population.”
An application for a petrol filling station and two drive through restaurants at the site was refused on highways grounds in November 2019 but the latest blueprint has prompted a series of objections.
Carol Sadler, from Church Road, in Elmswell, said: “The impact of this application, if approved, will be horrendous regarding the increased, muddled, uncontrolled movement of traffic around the roundabout at the base of Church Hill.
“This application will change the whole feeling of this village which is being swamped with planning applications. Enough is enough.”
Georgette Dawson, of Prospect Road, in Norton, said: “It is not needed. There is too much building work going on around this area.”
Peter Chappell, from Willow Drive, in Badwell Ash, said: “I object to this application on the grounds of traffic flow in respect of the roundabout. All vehicles using this facility from the A14 either east or westbound will have to access the roundabout twice once on leaving the A14 and once to rejoin the A14. This increase of traffic at the roundabout will not only lead to congestion but also result in traffic leaving the facility creating a dangerous junction for general traffic leaving the A14 east bound. Also traffic leaving the A14 westbound to use the facility will add to this dangerous junction with both traffic rejoining the A14 Eastbound and general local traffic. If this facility was to be allowed it would need extensive additional infrastructure on the road layout of the existing local roads which I am sure would make in financially unviable.”
Paul Peachey, of Bennett Avenue, Elmswell, said: “A worrying concern is where the rubbish will be disposed of, at the moment we have a very litter free area and feel this will cause many concerns to the local villages. At the moment this is a very quiet area and hate to think what this will do to the vicinity. The local villages have already had to take the full impact of building in what one would call villages, more impact of a petrol station and coffee shop would kill local amenities.”
Lorraine Peachey, of Selion Way, Elmswell, said: “This is a disgrace and should not be allowed to be accepted by our council. They should be looking at things like making the primary school bigger for the amount of children that we have in the village and looking out for them and provide a doctors surgery for all the new houses that have been built in this what was once a small quaint village. I do not want to be looking at a petrol station and probably a Macdonald’s while driving back to the village I live in and love.”
Angie Smith, of Eastern Way, Elmswell, said: “We don’t need a restaurant. We are a village. We need a school.. and a cycle route to the surgery.”
Annette Crane, of Wetherden Road, Elmswell, said: “Elmswell does not need any further development, it will be a complete eye sore and totally unnecessary.
Gail Webb, of Hawk End Lane, Elmswell, said: “It will increase traffic in an already overstretched area and will ruin the view into the village. The noise and pollution will increase and will be detrimental to the population.The late night food and coffee will increase noise and vandalism and anti social behaviour. The speed people drive through the village is already above the speed limit and I can imagine this will only increase with more visitors.”
But Lord Gary Hunter, of Kiln Lane, Elmswell, said: “With a growing population this would make local jobs. It would also place Elmswell on the map for tourism.”
And Keith Towers, of Lodge Close, Thurston, added: “This application should be supported as it cleverly uses a small area of land for a useful services facility which is directly accessible from A14. The nearest services that are directly accessible are I believe are at Rowley Mile nr. Newmarket (to the west) and Beacon Hill (A140) to the east.”