Sheridan Steen, Friston Resident, Open Floor Hearings 4 (OFH4), Thursday 5 November 2020

My name is Sheridan Steen and a resident of Friston HAVING LIVED HERE FOR 34 YEARS.

FRAGILITY - Fragility of the village, and villages and communities that will be affected.

Firstly the FRAGILITY of Thorpeness, THE CLIFFS ARE INCREDIBLY FRAGILE, with the houses on North End Avenue under threat of collapse and the AONB will not withstand the onslaught of multiple trenches.

The road system is FRAGILE.  The area is crisscrossed with small rural roads. In their consultation The Applicant stated that the increase in traffic due to the construction would be NEGLIGABLE, as a result of COVID we have seen how quickly these roads can become overcrowded.  The increase in tourist traffic has shown this.

The A1094 from Friday Farm to Aldeburgh has always been dangerous I personally witnessed a fatal crash east of the Leiston turning.

Now we have more tourist traffic and a far greater number of cyclists including family groups with children using this road. In fact, this road forms part of the National Cycle Route 1.

Take a careful look at the road crossing at Aldeburgh Golf Club where players, their dogs, children and trolleys have to dodge the traffic on the A1094 crossing between courses or driving out of the carpark . The view down the road is limited. The increase traffic will not have a NEGLIGIBLE IMPACT there. At a consultation when asked what the Applicant considered to be a negligible change in traffic their response was an increase of between 20 to 24% would be regarded as NEGLIGABLE.

Undoubtedly there will be deaths and life changing events should the application be approved.

The Ambulances will not make the return trip from Ipswich to Aldeburgh in 80 minutes - Google’s estimate currently is 40 minutes each way.

The Fire Services from Aldeburgh, Leiston and Saxmundham will not make their SHOUTS on time. Lifeboats will not be launched in time to save the yachtsman or the child drifting out to sea on their Lilo!

Carers, already pressed for time will struggle to reach their patients living in their own homes.

Please take a very careful look at the traffic issues that will arise at the Aldeburgh roundabout. Even if no HGVs go into Aldeburgh the white van man and ancillary cars will. SPR said that the residents who park their cars along both the Saxmundham and Leiston roads will have to park elsewhere – I wonder where?


It is imperative that the Planning Inspectors visit the village of Friston after dark, giving you an insight into both the total silence but also the darkness of the skies.

The Applicants proposals for mitigation re noise and light pollution are laughable if they weren’t so serious.

The word noise is derived from Latin word ‘‘Nausea’’ implying ‘‘unwanted sound’’ or sound that is loud, unpleasant or unexpected. It can be defined as wrong sound, in the wrong place and at the wrong time.

I would like to direct the Planning Inspectorate to the Beauly BUZZ:

Energy firm SSE in 2015 had to spend millions subduing the unacceptable noise from the West Balbair substation site in Scotland. The community council’s chairman, Steve Byford, said the high costs of repair were a problem of SSE’s own making. “If it had shown due diligence and done the noise survey correctly before work began, it would have known the noise impacts of these transformers.”

Florence Nightingale recognized noise as a health hazard in 1859 when she wrote “Unnecessary noise is the cruellest abuse of care which can be inflicted on either the sick or the well”. The Friston BUZZ, should not be allowed.


The village does Flood and I have submitted video footage of recent events in my submission, the applicants mitigation plans are inadequate bearing in mind that the planned site sits above the village.

The Applicant’s RAG assessment needs to be carefully scrutinised.  This year in our garden alone I recorded 35 species of birds, (including a peregrine falcon and owls), 3 species of bats, hedgehogs, newts, frogs, grass snakes and an increasing number of bees and butterflies. A Growing body of research is being gathered on how anthropogenic noise affects wildlife, I make further reference in my Written submission.  

The Applicants proposal concerning mitigation of noise and screening are woefully unclear. Grove Wood which the Applicant claims will screen Knodishall and parts of the village was this year partially felled due to Ash Die back – it is highly likely that more trees will need to be felled and its screening effect diminished. The plans to plant trees to screen the village is flawed, who will police and monitor these plantations and for how long? And ensure that we won’t be left with just a forest of green plastic tree protectors with canes protruding?

Friston village on the face of it may appear to be a small and insignificant Suffolk village, indeed one of the Applicants’ representatives when they made their first consultation said and I quote “you are more intelligent than we expected”! and another said “Friston could become the largest energy hub in Europe”

We must have joined up thinking and follow the lead of our European neighbours and prevent the Gold rush practices of the energy giants to carve up the Heritage Coast.

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