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Bishop's Stortford stonemason J Day & Son planning move to Thorley paddock

One of Bishop’s Stortford’s oldest businesses wants to relocate from the town centre to a paddock in Thorley.

Stonemason J Day & Son – which was established in 1820 and has been in Station Road since 1912 – has submitted a planning application to develop a business unit with associated access, parking and landscaping at Thorley Street Paddock, a greenfield site to the east side of Thorley Street.

The Green Belt plot is currently owned by the Streeter farming family, and Tom Streeter has written to planning authority East Herts Council (EHC) supporting the application.

He states: “The field has been redundant for many years, deriving no use or income due to its location in an urban area. The site is surrounded on three sides by development and has no agricultural value at all, given the remoteness from the rest of our farm.”

Louise Campbell, associate director at Coke Gearing Consulting, has also written in support of J Day & Son’s application. She states: “The current site... is no longer fit for purpose. With the company expanding, the business needs larger, more modern and efficient facilities to work from.”

She points out the stonemason’s has been actively seeking new premises for a number of years. A number of sites were identified but were not feasible options.

The application has attracted opposition from Thorley residents. At Thorley Parish Council’s meeting on Monday evening, members discussed how they would respond to the proposal.

Cllr Richard Lavender raised concerns about the impact the development would have on road safety.

“The actual highway at that point in Thorley Street is dangerous,” he said.

Chairman Cllr Robin Lumsden added: “I find it bizarre that they’ve ruled out the employment site at Bishop’s Stortford South.”

In a statement to EHC, the parish council wrote: “Bearing in mind that it is stated that this type of development is inappropriate in Green Belt, and that the site is in Green Belt, then the application must be refused.”

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