'Not enough public consultation' over 'white elephant' Bromham Mill regeneration plans says residents' group

The Bromham Residents Group packed out a parish council meeting to demonstrate their concerns over "the over-development" of Bromham Mill
Bromham Mill Entrance in 2021 Screenshot Google Streetview (C)2024 Google Image Capture October 2021Bromham Mill Entrance in 2021 Screenshot Google Streetview (C)2024 Google Image Capture October 2021
Bromham Mill Entrance in 2021 Screenshot Google Streetview (C)2024 Google Image Capture October 2021

The Bromham Residents Group packed out a parish council meeting to demonstrate their concerns over “the over-development” of Bromham Mill.

Over 50 residents surrounded Bromham parish councillors at the meeting on Tuesday (April 2) while questions were asked over the handling of the Bromham Mill Development Plan.

Group member, Steve Butler, told the parish councillors: “You can see that the strength of feeling for this.”

He asked: “When will the master plan [for the development] be produced and be made available to residents?”

Parish councillor Trevor Roff, chair Bromham Mill Board, replied: “The planning application is available anyway on the [borough council’s planning portal]. We’re looking to produce some sequencing for the various stages of the delivery of the plan.

“Just because we’ve got the consent for the holistic development… it does not mean the parish council will proceed with all or parts of it,” he said.

The group also handed the parish council written questions going into more detail than is practical during a parish council meeting.

These included asking for the evidence that the 1930s barn has been condemned due to being structurally unsound, adding that unless, for some as yet unspecified reasons, it is in “imminent danger of collapse and thus entirely beyond repair” renovation could be possible if sufficient funds are made available,

The group wrote: “[We} believe that no action to demolish the 1930s barn should be implemented until the precise reasons for this have been established, published In Bromham Broadsheet and explained to Bromham residents at a public meeting in Bromham Village Hall.

“The 1930s barn is a part of Bromham’s heritage and residents have a right to have their say before demolition is authorised. The barn, although not listed, is a valued part of the intrinsic character of the mill courtyard and site.”

The group also believes that there has been insufficient public consultation

“The Bromham Mill Development Plan awarded planning permission in January 2024 differs very substantially from the original plan approved by residents as part of the 2021 Neighbourhood Plan,” it wrote.

It signed off by adding: ” Should the current Bromham Mill Development Plan now awarded planning permission go ahead, altering the mill site for the worse as many residents believe will be the case.

“What will happen if this substantially business driven development plan proves to be a white elephant that has swallowed several million pounds worth of council tax payers’ money leaving a substantial long term burden on Parish Council finances for decades to come?

“A good number consider this outcome to be more than a possibility given the current state of the British Economy.

“Bromham residents have a right to learn the answers to these questions and wish to receive them in writing and in full by not later than the end of April.”