Controversial plans to refurbish Sudbury's Belle Vue House have been deferred following a legal issue.

Churchill Retirement Living's scheme had been recommended for approval by council planners, but developer McCabe & Abel – which was going to handle the refurbishment of Belle Vue House – pulled out just days before Wednesday's meeting.

The meeting was cut short when a legal issue was raised and discussed by councillors in private, with no public or press allowed to listen in. There was no date given for when the plans will be discussed again.

The plans to redevelop the old swimming pool into a block of 41 retirement apartments and convert Belle Vue House into two homes had been selected from six different options by Babergh District Council's in 2021.

A representative from Churchill Retirement Living said the scheme would help provide "critical" accommodation for the older population and is a "high quality" project.

Objectors questioned the need for the project and argued that the land at the site of the swimming pool should be classed as a public open space.