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Derelict depot site of one of Norfolk's largest employers could finally be turned into housing

PUBLISHED: 12:24 09 July 2019 | UPDATED: 08:55 10 July 2019

Site off South Green, Dereham, which was once home to Crane Fruehauf parts and labour site. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARY

Site off South Green, Dereham, which was once home to Crane Fruehauf parts and labour site. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARY

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An area of land which has been derelict for more than 10 years after one of Norfolk's largest employers closed could finally be redeveloped for housing.

Site off South Green, Dereham, which was once home to Crane Fruehauf parts and labour site. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARYSite off South Green, Dereham, which was once home to Crane Fruehauf parts and labour site. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARY

The land off South Green, in Dereham, used to be the site of the parts and service depot of internationally renowned trailer manufacturer Crane Fruehauf.

The company collapsed in 2005, with the loss of 345 jobs. At the time, it was one of the Norfolk's largest employers.

The site remained in use for about three years after, used by FP&S Ltd before it moved to Rash's Green.

It has stood empty ever since.

Site off South Green, Dereham, which was once home to Crane Fruehauf parts and labour site. Picture: ROCHESite off South Green, Dereham, which was once home to Crane Fruehauf parts and labour site. Picture: ROCHE

The brownfield site is 2.29 acres (0.93 hectares) and has been on the market for offers in the region of £1.1 million.

Outline planning permission for residential development was given by Breckland Council in 2017.

Graham Jones, an associate at the selling agents Roche Chartered Surveyors, said: "Some years ago we did try to promote the land for both industrial development and retail development, but there wasn't sufficient demand to make either development viable and in any event the council was keen to see the site developed for residential.

"The site is under offer and close to exchanging contracts.

Demolition work on the former Crane Fruehauf depot at South Green in Dereham, in 2011. Picture: Ian BurtDemolition work on the former Crane Fruehauf depot at South Green in Dereham, in 2011. Picture: Ian Burt

"The purchaser intends to redevelop the site to provide housing but will need to apply for detailed planning consent for their scheme."

READ MORE: 'Not surprised really' - People share their views following the closure of business.

Demolition work on the former Crane Fruehauf depot at South Green in Dereham, 2011. Picture: Ian BurtDemolition work on the former Crane Fruehauf depot at South Green in Dereham, 2011. Picture: Ian Burt

The current outline planning permission suggests a scheme of a 40-dwelling development.

As part of the scheme £91,162 would be paid towards off-site affordable housing with further contributions for 800 sq m of open space to be provided within the site with a financial contribution to maintenance. The agreement also states contributions to be made to nursery and junior school education and a library contribution of £75 per home.

If the plan went ahead, it is also hoped that drainage on the site would be looked at as part of the scheme as there had previously been flooding problems at houses in nearby Lynn Hill.

Since the company's closure, the site has been cleared and the buildings demolished and cleared.

This is the latest area of land in line for redevelopment for housing in Dereham.

Last week plans were unveiled for 24 homes on the former Palgrave Brown site at Westfield Road.

It has also emerged that the neighbouring site which houses a Jewson branch which has just shut could also be redeveloped.

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