Agreement to move forward with Attleborough growth plan

PUBLISHED: 09:47 12 February 2013 | UPDATED: 09:47 12 February 2013

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A proposal to move forward with a blueprint for growth in Attleborough was agreed at a meeting of the town council this week.

The neighbourhood plan for how future industry, housing, health and education will look was raised by Queens ward councillor Richard Middleton who asked for the council’s approval for a working group to move forward with the idea.

It comes after a decision was made by Breckland Council to abandon the Attleborough and Snetterton Heath Area Action Plan (ASHAAP).

Speaking at Monday’s town council meeting, Mr Middleton said the aim was to have the neighbourhood plan drawn up by the end of the year.

“If we don’t get to it we’ll be overtaken by planning applications put in willy-nilly,” he said. “We’ve got to sort out the detail and think about the objectives and how we will engage with the community because it’s vital these plans have community involvement.”

He said what to include would be reached in discussion with local people, before holding a referendum and finally sending it to Breckland Council for approval.

Town mayor Sam Taylor said it was important not to swept up by Breckland Council’s Local Development Framework.

“Under the ASHAAP we were part of a specific group but with the local plan that’s not the case,” she said. “We are in there with everybody else so as soon as we can get some sort of idea formed the more we can guide Breckland.”

The neighboured plan could include architecture, housing, leisure, health, education and employment, and professional help will be sought to draw up the document.

Mr Middleton said the group would also be viewing other town plans and learning from mistakes already make.

Fellow Queens ward member, Tony Perkins, lent his support to the idea, and added: “I don’t think we’ve got any option but to support this because if we don’t have anything in place it will be a free for all.”

Burgh and Haverscroft ward member, Alan Marchant, added: “It sounds like a year is a long time but I know how much work this is. I certainly endorse that we go forward because I think we need to take control.”

The proposal was unanimously voted in favour of by councillors.

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