Newmarket residents ‘trapped’ in homes by parked cars

Brewers Lane, Newmarket
Brewers Lane, Newmarket

People living near a new development in Newmarket claim to have been trapped in their homes by vehicles belonging to construction workers on the site.

Residents in Brewers Lane, which leads to the former Maltings buildings in Fordham Road, say that on occasions they have been unable to get out of their front doors because of transit vans and other vehicles which park outside their homes from 7am to 5pm daily,

Karl Chapman, who has rented his terraced bungalow which is owned by Surrey-based Hastoe Housing Association, for seven years, said that the problems began when developers Cleanslate Ltd started work on two apartment blocks and a terrace of town houses on the site in July 2014.

“For three years they have parked in a solid line outside our houses without even leaving a gap for us to get out of our doors properly,” said Mr Chapman.

“I haven’t been able to have on-line grocery orders delivered, the council bin men have repeatedly been unable to empty rubbish bins and we haven’t been able to have visitors because there’s no longer anywhere for them to park,”

Mr Chapman, who is disabled, said that home visits by his NHS community nurse have been cancelled and one of his neighbours, who uses a wheelchair, has sometimes been unable to get out of her house at all.

“We’ve been virtually barricaded in our homes. It’s been three years of absolute hell,” said Mr Chapman, who is concerned over what could happen if a fire engine or ambulance needed access.

“Paramedics would never be able to get a patient on a stretcher out of the door,” he said.

Neil Cox, External Affairs Manager for Hastoe Housing said Mr Chapman had contacted the Association on a number of occasions and he was aware that a disabled resident had been having difficulties with her wheelchair.

“As far as I know, no other tenants have been in touch with us to complain of problems,” he said.

“We are going to pop a note through their letter boxes, essentially asking them to be our eyes and ears. We obviously don’t want our tenants to be inconvenienced and if that is the case they should either contact us or just walk down to Cleanslate’s Sales Office where someone would be available to help them”.

The Journal approached Cleanslate Ltd for a comment but none was forthcoming before the time of going to press.

Planning permission was granted by Forest Heath Council for a total of 44 homes on the site despite opposition from town councillors who argued it was over-development of the area.

The plans were for a total of 44 homes, including town houses, two apartment blocks plus flats within the historic Malt House, for many years home to photographic processors Colourcare International. The plans included a 66-bay car park.