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Fury at ‘gateway to nowhere’ plan for 540 homes

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Ninety-five per cent of those attending a public meeting in Soham to hear an update on an application for 540 homes have signed a petition opposed to it.

More than 80 signatures were collected by the Qua Fen Common residents from those attending – and their petition has gone to East Cambridgeshire District Council.

The petition is critical of This Land Ltd for staging the public meeting on August 31.

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“The event was held in the school holidays and many Soham residents were on holiday,” says the Qua Fen Common residents committee.

“The event was held from 3.30pm to 6.30pm and many Soham residents were at work or returning from work.

“The invitations did not get delivered to some residents on Qua Fen Common.”

The petition spokesperson said: “My invitation was left on my garden wall with a pebble on top.”

The letter to East Cambs planners says: “We the Qua Fen Commons residents noted the number of people who were able to make the event and asked them to sign a petition if they objected to the development.

“95 per cent of those who attended the presentation signed our petition objecting to the development.

“We have included a copy of their signatures.

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“In fact, work has spread about this gateway to nowhere development and we will be collecting many more signatures objecting to Soham Eastern Gateway”.

The committee says the council can expect a refreshed and expanded petition.

The committee urges: “Councillors, you represent the electorate, and we hope that you will note the overwhelming support we are getting objecting to the white elephant that is the Eastern Gateway proposed development.”

The public meeting was held at the Comrades Club in Market Street.

This Land had promised residents the opportunity to “discuss this vision in greater detail”.

The project is important for the success of This Land Ltd, 100 per cent owned by Cambridgeshire County Council.

This Land – set up as an arm’s length entity -has borrowed £100m from the council and achieving success is vital to its long-term viability.

But within 664 documents – available to view on the council’s website – is a mix of anger, resentment, fury, and, some may say cussedness, of Soham residents who want it ditched.

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