Gresham’s School homes plan in Holt backed by town councillors

Gresham's School, Holt.
PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY Gresham's School, Holt. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
9:28 AM

A trio of homes schemes on land belonging to an historic town school have been backed by town councillors.

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The majority of members of Holt Town Council voted in favour of 153 new properties which would be built on three plots of land at Gresham’s School, if approved by North Norfolk District Council.

Sale of the land, with permission for housing, is key to unlocking a £10m vision to build a sixth form centre and revamp six boarding houses.

If approved, a triangle of unused land between Cromer Road and the bypass could have 126 homes; a piece of school field off Grove Lane could have 19 larger four-to-five bedroomed homes; and land behind the library, also with access off Grove Lane, could have eight detached homes.

The plans, which were amended following a public consultation by the school and its development partner Endurance Estates Strategic Land, were discussed this week by the council in front of the dozens of concerned residents.

A resident said: “Everyone wants Gresham’s to succeed but it should not succeed at the detriment of Holt.”

Other homeowners said schools, the medical practice and other town services would not cope with the extra demand, and the loss of green space would change the feel of the area.

There were also concerns that extra traffic along Grove Lane would be dangerous for people who used the road but Endurance Estates said amendments to the plan were “build outs” to stop rat-run problems.

Councillors agreed a condition to make Grove Lane access only for residents and visitors, among other conditions including more affordable homes and town parking.

Member John Blythe said without Gresham’s Holt would “die”.

8 comments

  • My apologies, my previous message should have said "if no accusation has been made" rather than "accusation has been made"

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    bw

    Thursday, April 17, 2014

  • The response by "sunshine" is amusing. The meeting was full to capacity, that in terms of such things is not a small number. I have made some straight forward observations so why "sunshine" should suggest that someone is being accused of dishonesty must be a question to that writer. If accusation has been made why defend it? Moreover perhaps sunshine would like to set out exactly what "a huge amount of inaccurate so called statements of facts and and half-understood analysis of the planning situations" have been made. Not wanting something to happen is no more a personal reaction than wanting it to.

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    bw

    Thursday, April 17, 2014

  • The irony of "the real picture" featuring in the message from BW cannot be missed. To actually claim that the group of people in the room that evening were being "overridden" at any point is an outrageous misrepresentation. The behaviour of, what was no doubt a small but very loud and vocal minority of the public, was aggressive and the language offensive. As for councillors being "influenced by the applicants" BW is either not using the correct word or is walking on very thin ice. Are councillors not supposed to make their decisions based on the APPLICATIONS? However being influenced by the APPLICANTS is a very serious, and in this case, groundless accusation. There seems to be a lot of this being thrown around at the moment and always in messages that also contain a huge amount of inaccurate so called statements of facts and and half-understood analysis of the planning situations. Not wanting something to happen is a personal reaction to which anyone is entitled. Accusing others of dishonesty and promulgating erroneous information in order to get their own way is taking a far more dangerous route. I hope those decent people who would not take such a tack are aware enough not to get drawn into this most unpleasant situation by the few and get the reality of any "facts" quoted in any comments here, or other sources, checked by the professionals before allowing them to influence decisions.

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    Sunshine

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

  • Jeffrey Osborne- Gresham's has never shown any interest in selling their land off of Station Road as a way to alleviate Holt's problems with car parking. The fact that Station Road is potentially the ideal spot for a car park should be obvious to them and to the town council. However, despite what some people say Gresham's and Holt's future aren't inextricably linked and Gresham's needs to ask whether or not they deserve the privileged position they are held in by the town council? As it stands Gresham's self interest isn't benefiting Holt anywhere near as much as some people would like to make out!

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    Bad Form

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

  • Also Bad Form that land is still potentially to be sold off. Nothing to say they won't try something there too, it's not necessarily either or!

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    Jeffrey Osborne

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

  • This is a well written report, being objective in reporting the result but giving enough indication of the real picture which was one where the people were being overridden by a number of councillors clearly being "influenced" by the applicants. Perhaps someone should note what was said by the Inspector at the last planning enquiry on this area - "While no one doubts the longstanding and continuing contribution of this famous school to the economy and life of the town, that does not put it in a privileged position when seeking planning permission for non-education-related development. Thus in my opinion it does not override all other planning considerations" Applicants need to show that there is a need for housing in that area and that need has been set by the local authority whose Head of Planning has confirmed the original target (which raised questions as to the possible lack of services to match) is due to be met. The application simply says it will be profitable for Greshams and their promoters (Endurance), the latter standing to gain a seven figure sum for getting approval and sale. Can the law not be applied to Greshams as it would to others? There is no right to ask for a favourable decision to create private profit! To avoid doubt I have no axe to grind about the school having sent my children there.

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    bw

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

  • Didn't the original 'car park' plan include a whopping great supermarket on the cricket pitch? You fail to mention that.

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    Jeffrey Osborne

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

  • Why is it that Gresham's seem to have the ability to get their way so easily when it comes to wanting to sell their land for housing but were no where near as accommodating in trying to solve Holt's car parking problems? There can be little doubt that Gresham's hold the key to easily solving Holt's car parking dilemma if they were to sell some of their land off Station Road for that purpose? However, that they or the town council will not contemplate trying to progress such an idea shows contempt by Gresham's for the town problems and a lack of foresight by the town council for not trying to persuade Gresham's of how beneficial such an idea would be. Now all that will happen is more green spaces will disappear from Holt, extra pressure will be put on local services and even more cars will be vying to find non existent car parking spaces in the town centre. Bizarre!

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    Bad Form

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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