December 8 2013 Latest news:
Saturday, September 7, 2013
Residents turned out in their droves to express their opposition to a suggestion that hundreds of new homes could be built in their village.
About 100 people packed into a small room at The Chequers, in Wimbotsham, to help coordinate the village’s response to West Norfolk Borough Council’s Detailed Policies and Sites Plan, which says land between the north of Downham Market and Wimbotsham could be a possible location for future housing developments.
Mr Loveday, whose Broomhill home backs onto one of the proposed pieces of land, said: “Most people that I have spoken to are shocked that they are considering putting homes on that land and they knew absolutely nothing about it.”
He said the council could have done more to inform residents about its proposals – but John Clements, the authority’s principal planner, said it had put into action a “campaign of advertisements in three local newspapers, public drop-in sessions at various locations across the borough, notices at each of the provisionally chosen sites and over 1,000 letters and emails to people and organisations who had previously expressed an interest in the council’s plans”.
He also said organisers of the meeting had been provided with 200 copies of the consultation material.
Advice was given to residents at the meeting about how they could register their opposition to the plans.
The council’s Detailed Policies and Sites Plan sets out areas of land which should be earmarked to accommodate 16,500 new homes which officials say are needed by 2026 to meet the needs of a growing population.
Comments can be made until October 4 and full details of the proposals are on the council’s website and at the council offices.
“If we don’t fight to save this field, it will be the thin end of the wedge,” Mr Loveday said of the site near Broomhill. “The more people that write in, the better.”
Leah Worrall, 78, of nearby Garrow Drive, said: “They’ve done a lot of building around here – it’s about time they started to build schools and extra supermarkets.”