Whittlesey park home residents will receive more updates about efforts to resolve planning dispute, says council leader
- Credit: Archant
Residents who dubbed their park home complex ‘Little Beirut’ have been promised that they will receive more updates about efforts to resolve a planning dispute.
A number of residents of Mandalay Park, off Commons Road, Whittlesey, attended Thursday’s meeting of Fenland District Council in the search for answers.
Whittlesey councillor Martin Curtis told the council: “They have huge concerns about their treatment – they seem to be stuck in the middle of an unfortunate situation from Fenland District Council and the owners of the site.
“I want a commitment from the leader that residents will get regular updates from Fenland about what is happening on their site.”
Council leader John Clark said in response: “Clearly, wherever possible, we will provide suitable updates for councillors and residents once information becomes available. I appreciate your frustrations and we will endeavour to keep residents updated more than now.”
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Cllr Curtis also told Thursday’s council meeting: “Up until now they have advised me that they have dealt with seven different planning officers.
“One of the immediate concerns is because there is a stop notice on the site the site cannot be made secure. Is there anything Fenland can do to put that gate on so that they have the security they signed up to for that development?
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“Keep them informed and they will go away as they will understand things are happening.”
Councillor Will Sutton, portfolio holder for planning, said: “This is a very difficult situation and I fully understand all the concerns of the residents.
“I have been speaking with the ward councillors for many months regarding this issue. It is complex, lengthy and it’s not going to happen overnight but we do want to keep everybody involved.
“There are some very complex issues on that site which, for legal reasons going forward, we just can’t divulge everything but we will commit to saying what we can.”
Councillor Kay Mayor told the council she also receives e-mails from Mandalay Park residents on a regular basis. Cllr Clark asked for her to be the residents’ local champion.
Three couples moved on to Mandalay Park 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.
More than 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.
Last year, 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,” she said. “We call this Little Beirut because we have no lights, roads or paths and it is just a mess everywhere.”