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The Sheringham Shoal Offshore Wind Farm, off the north Norfolk coast. North Norfolk District Council is looking to establish a Local Development Order to encourage companies which could support Sheringham Shoal and other wind farms to base themselves in the district. Picture: Ian Burt
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
A public consultation has begun this week into plans to allow companies to set up premises at a proposed offshore energy industry business park between Fakenham and Wells without applying for planning permission.
North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) is looking to establish a simplified planning regime, known as a Local Development Order (LDO), at Egmere.
The LDO would allow companies which meet certain criteria to set up premises at a 28 hectare site at Egmere without applying for planning permission.
If approved this would be the first LDO established in north Norfolk.
Concerns have been raised about the cumulative impact of developments in Egmere.
Plans to build an anaerobic digestion plant at Egmere were approved last week and a neighbouring solar park has been proposed.
NNDC is inviting people to comment on the LDO proposals.
Tom FitzPatrick, leader of NNDC, and member for Walsingham, said: “This council is determined to secure as many economic and employment benefits from offshore wind energy developments in north Norfolk as possible, and one way of doing this is to create a positive environment for inward investment by wind energy companies and their sub-contractors.
“The proposed designation of an LDO at Egmere, situated where it is, outside the Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, but close to the port of Wells and on the strategically important B1105 linking Fakenham and Wells, is a key element of the council’s ‘offer’ to such investors.
“We will consider all the representations before deciding whether to continue with the proposal in either its currently proposed or amended form; and any proposal will also need the endorsement of the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.”
The consultation runs until March 15. More details can be seen on the NNDC website northnorfolk.org and by following the links to the Egmere LDO proposal. Copies of the consultation leaflet are available from NNDC, Wells Harbour Commissioners, Fakenham Connect and at Wells and Fakenham libraries.
An exhibition will be held at Wells Methodist Church Hall, Theatre Street, Wells, between 3pm and 7pm on February 4, followed by a presentation and question and answer session at that evening’s Wells Town Council meeting.
The plans will be displayed at Walsingham Village Hall between 3pm and 7pm on February 25, followed by a presentation and question and answer session at the meeting of Walsingham Parish Council.
Comments can be submitted online at consult.north-norfolk.gov.uk/portal and following the links to the proposed Egmere LDO; in writing to The Planning Policy Team, North Norfolk District Council, Holt Road, Cromer NR27 9EN or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org