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Travellers could soon face eviction from south Norfolk site

PUBLISHED: 13:18 26 October 2012 | UPDATED: 14:46 26 October 2012

Travellers could soon be facing eviction from private land they have occupied on the outskirts of a Norfolk town.

Up to seven caravan pitches have been set up on Potash Fen between Diss and Roydon, but South Norfolk Council is trying to contact the owner of the site to get the caravans removed and stands ready to advise on how to begin eviction proceedings.

The travellers moved to the site, which is close to a row of bungalows, earlier this week after officers from South Norfolk Council asked them to leave their previous home at the former Hamlin electronics factory, off the A1066 Park Road in Diss.

Marston’s Inns and Taverns, which owns more than 2,000 pubs and restaurants across the country, has submitted plans for a food focused pub on the land.

The proposals for a 180 seat restaurant and bar comes after outline plans by Spen Hill Developments - the development arm of supermarket giant Tesco - for a 60 bedroom hotel and restaurant/pub were granted last summer.

The latest proposals, which have been submitted to South Norfolk Council, are for a 650sqm building with first floor staff accommodation and 66 car park spaces and ten cycle stands.

The entrance, off Park Road, will be shared with whoever builds the hotel at the rear of the 1.55ha brownfield site, next to Diss bus station.

In an application to the district council, the agent for Marston’s said the premises would be a “food-led public house” and “does not compete with more traditional town centre public houses.” The applicant adds that the proposals to build a coaching-inn style pub and restaurant would result in “significant job creation”.

The front of the site forms part of the Diss conservation area.

Diss Town Council’s planning committee has approved the plans in principle, while expressing concerns about how the site would sit in the context of the surrounding Park Road area and south end of the town, particularly in the context of the neighbouring Norfolk Feather Company and electricity sub-station.

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