An independent voice in the village, for the village. Providing news, information and action on matters that count.
Your Neighbourhood Plan
The choice:

A vote AGAINST the Neighbourhood Plan is a vote FOR Taylor Wimpey. It would open the flood gates allowing our village to be overrun with mass development such as that planned by Taylor Wimpey.

A vote FOR the Neighbourhood Plan will help PROTECT our village from over-development and the Taylor Wimpeys of this world.

Neighbourhood Plan
Controlled, proportionate developmentMass over-development such as planned by Taylor Wimpey

We ask you to join us in protecting our village from over-development by developers such as Taylor Wimpey

vote YES to the
Neighbourhood Plan

7th February 2019
Dove Cottage

Your Vote Counts
support your Neighbourhood Plan

The Debenham Neighbourhood Plan goes to referendum on the 7th February 2019.

You have recently received a poll card inviting you to vote on Debenham’s Neighbourhood Plan. You may have wondered why it is relevant to you and why you should bother voting.

What this means for you:

In terms of how it will affect your day to day life, and how it will impact on your village - this will be one of the most important votes you cast.

Voting YES to the Neighbourhood Plan not only ensures that we have provision for limited and sensitively placed housing, which meets the demands of our community, it gives us a stronger voice over what happens in our village because it becomes a statutory legally binding document. The Parish Council and Neighbourhood plan team have worked hard to secure our village’s future and ensure the character and setting of our village is protected - it’s now up to all residents to give our final support to our Neighbourhood plan.

If you travel across Suffolk there are housing developments appearing in villages and towns everywhere - the result of government policy to build thousands of homes in England. While most of us understand the need for affordable housing - the scale, speed and sometimes insensitive siting of these homes, along with poor build quality and inadequate transport links, can have a devastating impact on communities.

Framlingham is perhaps the best example locally of where development has gone badly wrong. Large scale housing estates have sprung up on a number of sites in the town despite strong and valid opposition from residents. Developers were unstoppable - the floodgates were open - because Framlingham was not protected by a Neighbourhood Plan. This situation has now changed, Framlingham’s Neighbourhood Plan finally became effective in March 2017 - too late - the damage to the town and community has already been done, with irreversible impacts on traffic, the environment, local shops and services.

In Debenham’s case, one of the main reasons why Mid Suffolk District Council’s planning committee rejected Taylor Wimpey’s plan to build nearly 300 homes opposite the leisure centre, is because we are so close to passing the referendum on our own Neighbourhood Plan. Taylor Wimpey may still appeal against that decision, and they may yet also put in an application for their larger alternate/phase 2 site (for 340 homes) south of the leisure centre and school. All part of their vision for our village - but they shouldn’t be controlling what happens in our village - we should.

If we don’t Vote Yes to the Neighbourhood plan on 7th February Debenham will become vulnerable to a succession of applications for big housing developments - turning Debenham Village into Debenham Town - without resolving the parking or traffic issues!

Please make your vote count on Thursday 7th February

Take 10 minutes out of your day to vote at Dove Cottage - it will make a huge difference to your village, your neighbours and you.

Voting - Thursday 7th February (7am and 10pm) Dove Cottage, High Street, Debenham.

Don't hand Debenham over to Developers

Take Control - Vote YES to Your Neighbourhood Plan

If you are unable to vote in person there is still time to organise a postal vote if you apply before the 23rd January or you can arrange for a proxy vote if you do so before 30th January.

You will be receiving a leaflet through your door on the above together with a poster supporting your village and your Neighbourhood Plan at the end of week commencing the 14th January 2019. If you wish to print off your own, they are available for download here:

“Neighbourhood Planning has revolutionised community involvement in the planning process, giving people a whole new voice in the big decisions that affect their lives. Far from being the ‘NIMBY’s charter’ that some predicted, we’ve found that neighbourhood plans actually lead to more new homes getting built than would otherwise be the case. It’s a great example of the value of that bond between local councils and local people. Because let me get one thing absolutely clear. Both myself and government remain absolutely, 100 per cent committed to localism and devolution.”

Sajid Javid 2017 to the National Association of Local Councils

The latest updates on the Neighbourhood Plan can be seen here: Neighbourhood Plan Status

295 New Homes in Debenham

A proposal has been drawn up to build 295 new houses on “Hilly Filly” and the land off Gracechurch Street opposite the school and leisure centre.

This represents a 35% increase on the existing size of the village.

Taylor Wimpey, the company behind the project are now in the process of preparing their planning submission for approval.

Can Debenham, with its infrastructure and roadways, support such a large project?

Development Map

The Debenham Parish Council together with the Neighbourhood Development committee, are in the final throes of completing their local Neighbourhood Development Plan - which does not support this project. However, the influence of the parish council alone on such large development projects is limited.

Your say counts, and when the time comes it is important that everyone in the village has the opportunity to express their views. Debenham should be developed in accordance with the wishes of its residents, for that to happen we all need to get involved in the planning process for the village and its surrounding areas.

This is just one proposal by one developer and one landowner. If significant expansion of the village is inevitable, it should be driven and directed in accordance with the needs, views and wishes of the village residents. In order to accomplish this we, the village residents, need to be proactive in preparing practical, credible alternate options, ones that satisfy the needs and wishes of both current and future residents while causing minimal detrimental impact to the village and its identity.

The primary consideration in any development, and particularly in Debenham, is the transit infrastructure. There is already a major problem in the village with regard to traffic along the High Street and Gracechurch street in particular, as well as the ongoing parking issue. Any future development needs to take that into proper practical consideration.

With the current proposal by Taylor Wimpey now on the table, time is of the essence in getting together a suitable response to ensure that development of the village meets the needs of current and future residents without further straining the infrastructure and traffic issues.

A great deal of time and effort has been put into the development of the Neighbourhood Plan it is now up to all of us to ensure that the wishes of residents reflected in that plan are respected, and that impractical developments are not simply imposed on the village and “steam-rollered” through. Anyone wishing to get involved in this process can email us here:


Taylor Wimpey proposal

Parish Council Neighbourhood Development Plan

Questions have been raised about the Community Infrastructure Levy and how it works so an explanatory link has been added here: Community Infrastructure Levy.