It's that time again, as another Parish Newsletter is circulated to a breathless readership...
Another year has come to Creeting St Peter, and not in the manner we all might have hoped, with all manner of restrictions upon us, and with the pandemic still dominating our lives. I hope that all of you are coping as best you can, but don’t forget, if there is anything that the Parish Council can do to help, be it having someone to talk to, or shopping or prescriptions that need collecting, we’ll do what we can.
Indeed, many of you have supported friends and neighbours throughout, and I am grateful to you for doing so. It is one of the things that makes village life special, that sense of togetherness and of looking out for each other. We may be short on facilities, but long on self-reliance.
As far as the Parish Council is concerned, we have two major issues which I suspect are familiar to you all - Gateway 14 and Poundfield Products.
In terms of Gateway 14, the Parish Council has been working with the developers to encourage and enable dialogue, supporting residents by providing an opportunity to offer their input and suggestions on ways of making the project less intrusive and to seek some mitigations for our community. I accept that the idea of having a logistics park on our doorstep is far from ideal, but the District Council, who own the site, are obliged to proceed. I must thank the quickly established Campaign Group, who have been extremely effective in engaging with both the developers and the District Council whilst surmounting a steep learning curve in terms of the workings, or otherwise, of local government. By the time you read this, it is expected that a formal planning application will have been submitted, and we will be looking very closely at it to ensure that our issues are clearly heard.
Turning to Poundfield Products, there are two separate issues awaiting a decision from Mid Suffolk District Council. An application to extend their operating hours made before Christmas 2019 is still pending, as is the recent application to extend onto agricultural land they own. The Parish Council has objected to both – we are concerned, as is the Senior Environmental Health Officer, about the impact on those living near to the site, and the damage done by too many heavy goods vehicles using the inadequate roads that link it to the A14.
Apart from that, you might be slightly surprised to hear that the Parish Council has declared a “climate emergency”. We are, in truth, a bit slow off the blocks – both the County and District Councils have already declared one. However, there are things that we, and you, can do, and we’ll be seeking to find ways of reducing our impact on the environment around us going forwards.
Finally, I’ve been using the County Council’s online highways reporting tool to notify them of things that need repair – they are going to take away the discarded road sign lying on the verge just beyond Highfields shortly. If you see a pothole, or a damaged road sign, or a damaged piece of road, please do report it – the website address is highwaysreporting.suffolk.gov.uk. The more people who report problems, the more likely it is that something will be done.