Gallery: Residents anger over park homes site they call “Little Beirut”

Mandalay Park, Luxury Park Homes, Whittlesey, Left: Raymond Hannan and Gordon Henderson on site. Pic

Mandalay Park, Luxury Park Homes, Whittlesey, Left: Raymond Hannan and Gordon Henderson on site. Picture: Steve Williams. - Credit: Archant

Residents living on a Whittlesey park home site have dubbed it “Little Beirut” and have accused Fenland planners of leaving them in the lurch over planning issues.

However, Fenland Council says investigations are due to take place today (Friday) and until the results are known no further work can be undertaken to complete the site.

Three couples moved on to the Mandalay Park in Commons Road, a year ago with promises from the site owner that work to complete roads, paths and lighting would be done within weeks of their arrival.

A year on the retired couples claim their lives are being made a misery with the site covered in mud and without roads, paths and lighting.

Heather Hannan and her husband Raymond were the first to move their park home onto the site, after seeing it advertised in a magazine.

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They wanted to move from Cornwall to the Fens, where Mrs Hannan’s family originated from.

“We moved on in good faith not realising there was no planning permission for the site. Two other couples moved on shortly after us and we are all retired. Some of us our in our 70s and are in ill health, my husband has been diagnosed with two types of cancer since we have been here and all the stress is not helping him,” said Mrs Hannan.

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She said work to complete the site has been started on more than one occasion but each time it has been halted by planning officers.

“We are just fed up, we call this Little Beirut because we have no lights, roads or paths and it is just a mess everywhere. We feel we are being used as some kind of political football, but don’t understand what the problem is. Everything the officers say is wrong with the site in terms of its planning permission can be easily rectified if the workmen are just allowed to get on and do it.”

A spokesman for Fenland Council said: “The delay on progressing the planning application is due to the fact that some of the pre-commencement conditions have still not yet been met, including for example landscaping and drainage.

“To date, two temporary stop notices have been served to prevent a continuation of any work carried out at different times on the site. The purpose of the recent stop notice was also to allow officers to seek further key information including previous and current site levels from the applicant, prior to any decision being made in respect of the current planning application.

“We have commissioned an independent survey by an environmental company, Geosphere Ltd, to investigate land level issues and assess if there is any potential land contamination. The company is due to carry out their survey investigations this Friday (December 12).

“No further progress can be made on the current application until we have the results of that survey. We expect to get them early in the new year. Meanwhile, any work that is undertaken on the site is done at the applicant’s own risk.”

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