Today is one of my proudest days as a Gainsborough councillor. It’s taken nearly two years work to get to this point, but Ipswich Borough Council has just announced big plans for Hawke Road. This is only happening because we have a Labour-run council that has listened to residents and prioritised the building of new council homes for rent, and a massive programme of investment in our play areas.

Architect's visualisation of new council homes and play area in Hawke Road

Ipswich Borough Council’s wholly owned housebuilding company, Handford Homes, has unveiled plans for the new development which will take in the redundant Diesco industrial site on the corner of Holbrook and Hawke Road and stretch north west along Hawke Road.

The plans are for 26 new council homes for rent, a mixture of six one and two bed flats and 20 two, three and four bedroom houses. These new homes will enable to the Council to house more families who are on the waiting list. One of the flats will be fully wheelchair accessible from the outset, the other homes are designed to be upgraded later to meet tenants needs if required.

All the homes will be built to the very latest standards – well insulated and fitted with solar panels, allocated parking spaces and access to electric vehicle charging points as standard. Once complete the new homes will be handed over to Ipswich Borough Council’s housing team to manage.

At the heart of the development will be a brand new, state of the art “Old Gasworks” play area with zones for toddlers, juniors, balls, active climbing and active sports as well as seating, landscaping and pathways. These plans will completely transform the Hawke Road play area and come just seven weeks after we announced exciting plans for a new play area on Landseer Park, which is now under construction.

New council homes are planned for Hawke Road
New council homes are planned for Hawke Road

If you want to know more, an exhibition has been organised at All Hallows Church Hall this week:

  • Wednesday 2 March – 4-8pm
  • Thursday 3 March – 1-5pm

Plans will be on display and you can speak to the architects and a member of the Council’s parks team, who will be responsible for the play area. There is also more information and a resident’s survey on the project website:

Local people will have another chance to have their say when a planning application is filed. In the meantime I’d love to know what you think about the plans – you can contact me here.

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