‘I have not seen democracy today’ – anger as major development gets thumbs up
PUBLISHED: 15:10 07 January 2019 | UPDATED: 15:55 07 January 2019
A major development in west Norfolk has been given the go ahead despite fierce objections.
West Norfolk council’s planning committee has met to discuss proposals to develop 16 industrial units on the western side of Rollesby Road, on the Hardwick industrial estate. Objections from people living in King’s Avenue and Extons Place, which back on to the site, were also heard.
Planning officers had previously recommended the plans for approval.
Penny Philpotts, 58, of King’s Avenue, who spoke at the meeting, said: “This site is not a subtle location and is totally unnecessary. It is a registered green site which houses an abundance of different wildlife.
“Elderly people, children and people who don’t have access to cars use the green space as a resource for some quiet time and relaxation. We aren’t against industry, but there are other places that could have been used.”
Speaking after the decision was made, Ms Philpotts said: “I am so disappointed about the result, the green site was our last barrier between the industrial sites.”
Deborah Hicknell, also of King’s Avenue, said her house backs on to the site.
“We know that our property was built in 1903 and we are worried that the new development will cause building and maintenance damage. There is land literally metres away that they could have used instead of the space behind our houses,” she said.
“I have lost all confidence in the council now, and a lot of us are worried.”
Kerron Abel, who lives nearby, added: “We have always said ‘we are a battleship going down, but firing guns’. Today we haven’t been listened to, I have not seen democracy today.
“Political bodies should get together and look and listen to the people.”
Another concerned local agreed that she had lost faith in the council.
She added: “I have lived in my house for 16 years and this summer is the first time I have heard noise from the industrial estate and this winter was the first time I could see buildings from my upstairs windows. This means trees are already being taken down without our knowledge, I wouldn’t trust the council now.”
Councillors John and Sandra Collop said they were very disappointed, and thought those living nearby had a good case.
“It was a very bad decision.” Mr Collop added.