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Broads Authority launches new Waveney River Centre probe

PUBLISHED: 06:00 17 October 2017

The temporary access to the Waveney River Centre. Picture: Waveney River Centre

The temporary access to the Waveney River Centre. Picture: Waveney River Centre

Archant

A business owner who thought a long running planning saga was over has accused Broads Authority officers of picking “silly fights” with landowners.

James Knight from Waveney River Centre is in dispute with the Broads Authority over Yurts that have been installed at the camp site.
Picture: Nick Butcher James Knight from Waveney River Centre is in dispute with the Broads Authority over Yurts that have been installed at the camp site. Picture: Nick Butcher

Waveney River Centre MD James Knight was given the go-ahead for three Mongolian-style tents in early October.

But now the centre is facing a fresh probe for a temporary access point used by construction vehicles.

During a Broads Authority planning committee meeting, planning officer Kayleigh Wood said officers had noticed the access point while inspecting the yurts.

She said: “The land owner advised this access had been created for construction traffic for the new lodges which have been granted planning permission and will be required for approximately two years. The access was not included in that application.”

Suffolk Wildlife Trust have received a donation from Waveney River Centre to help secure part of Carlton Marshes. James Knight, MD of the Waveney River Centre. 
Sonya Duncan
Copyright: Archant 2017 Suffolk Wildlife Trust have received a donation from Waveney River Centre to help secure part of Carlton Marshes. James Knight, MD of the Waveney River Centre. Sonya Duncan Copyright: Archant 2017

She said the highways authority was also looking into the matter due to “safety concerns”.

“It doesn’t have planning consent so we will also look into it,” she said.

Ms Wood said they had also received a complaint that the lodges were not being “sited” in their planning positions.

“That is another thing we will be investigating.”

James Knight at Waveney River Centre. Photo: Archant James Knight at Waveney River Centre. Photo: Archant

Planning committee chair Sir Peter Dixon said: “We are spending a regrettable amount of time on this particular location.”

Mr Knight said he knew the authority was looking into the matter, but felt it was permitted.

He said: “It seems that, having closed the other file, they are somewhat keen to open a new one.

“The access has been formed by building some soil up on our side of the road verge, to enable a vehicle to drive through what was already a pre-existing gap in the hedge.”

Mr Knight said the access would allow them to bring in building materials without vehicles driving past guests in the holiday lodges.

“We don’t intend to use it as a permanent entrance once the development is complete.”

He said he understood concerns at the amount of time spent investigating the business, but felt planning officers should stop picking “silly fights” with landowners.

“Enforcement action should only come to the committee if officers have determined that enforcement action is necessary and expedient.

“So there was (once again) no reason for this to come to committee in the first place, other than trying to make the committee annoyed with me.”

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