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Revealed: Developer’s eight-page proposal for new 10,000-home town in rural Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 15:20 01 August 2018 | UPDATED: 09:12 02 August 2018

An image (top) from Lanpro's summary document of the garden town plans and below, part of the site near North Elmham as it is now. Image: Lanpro/Archant

An image (top) from Lanpro's summary document of the garden town plans and below, part of the site near North Elmham as it is now. Image: Lanpro/Archant

Archant

Planners have set out their vision for a 10,000 home “garden town” in a document we are publishing today.

North Elmham station is abandoned but would be brought back under the plans. Photo: ArchantNorth Elmham station is abandoned but would be brought back under the plans. Photo: Archant

Norwich firm Lanpro wants to build a new town the size of Thetford in the mid-Norfolk countryside, off the A1067.

Last November they produced an eight-page prospectus setting out the scheme, but it has not been shared with those living in the area or the wider public.

We are publishing a full copy of it on our website today to give people more details, from Lanpro’s perspective, about the scheme.

Lanpro said in the document the garden town would “work with the existing landscape to protect our beautiful Norfolk countryside whilst embracing high-quality design and futurism.”

But the Campaign to Protect Rural England has heavily criticised the proposals, along with local councillors.

Parish councils have also picked holes in the document.

A map on page 5 suggests Bintree Woods, which is owned by the Forestry Commission, is part of the development. It is not.

Chris Leeming, managing director of Lanpro, said the woods would remain, but they would speak to the Forestry Commission about the “long term use of this site as part of the scheme,” if it went ahead.

It also shows the Mid Norfolk heritage railway line going north of the site. There is currently no track there, but bringing back the line is key to the success of the project.

The site of a proposed 10,000 home new garden town in the Norfolk countryside near North Elmham. Photo: ArchantThe site of a proposed 10,000 home new garden town in the Norfolk countryside near North Elmham. Photo: Archant

The line is owned by the Mid Norfolk Railway Preservation Trust which said some of the claims made in the document lacked evidence and were “absurd”.

But Mr Leeming retorted: “Why is providing a transport advantage that doesn’t currently exist absurd?

“I would argue the complete opposite. We are well aware of the current limitations of the service, but the future opportunity is obvious to see.”

•Read our full investigation here into the garden town plans

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