Shot in the arms for villagers looking for somewhere to live as East Cambs back Community Land Trust deal for Haddenham

Haddneham Community Land Trust - successful in their application for new homes at West End, Haddenha

Haddneham Community Land Trust - successful in their application for new homes at West End, Haddenham; a petition to prevent it was less than successful. - Credit: Archant

A statement on behalf of its 100 plus members described it as a “great result for our village” but opponents were less than pleased as 54 new homes applied for by Haddenham Community Land Trust won approval.

East Cambridgeshire District Council planning committee gave the scheme the green light after hearing that level of support for revised plans had tripled support locally.

Nineteen of the homes –to be built at West End – are deemed affordable and will become available for local residents.

Councillor Charles Roberts, leader of East Cambridgeshire District Council said: “We are thrilled to be bringing this project to fruition.

“Providing genuinely affordable local homes for local people though the Community Land Trust scheme is at the heart of East Cambs housing policy and it is something we are fully committed to supporting and developing.

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“East Cambs is proud to be leading the way in building community led housing and making our district a fantastic place to live and work.”

It was not without opposition, however, and a number of letters objecting to the scheme were considered by the committee as well as a petition from residents of Hardwicke Fields.

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The petition said eventually 300 homes could be built there and would ultimately increased the population of Haddenham by a third – 1,200 people and up the likelihood of 600 extra cars.

“Is the whole of Haddenham being duped?” the petition, signed by 30 people, posed to the council.

Councillors were told that four consultation meetings and a further 17 meetings with the council’s housing arm – Palace Green Homes – had been held. Across the four over 300 people attended.

Councillor Mark Hugo, ward councillor and trust chairman, said: “This decision means that the Haddenham Community Land Trust can go ahead and provide affordable homes for young local families in the village as well as providing an income source for further village projects and ventures.

“The site design was greatly influenced by local people following regular consultations with residents”.

Cllr Roberts added: “We have a ‘can-do’ attitude here at East Cambridgeshire and I am very proud to be leader of an organisation which is already delivering its key targets.”

Councillor Steve Cheetham, also a Haddenham member, said: “This is absolutely fantastic news for the village which like so many local villages faces the challenge of providing access to affordable homes which are vital to a sustainable community. “Having spoken to a number of residents at the consultation meetings, I am confident this CLT Scheme will transform the lives of many local residents”.

First occupants should move in within two years. -

On their website the CLT says that “the supportive words of the planning committee were evidence of how much we have achieved in a relatively short timescale compared with other similar organisations”.

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