142 new homes plan for Diss is thrown out

PUBLISHED: 12:49 31 March 2016 | UPDATED: 13:31 31 March 2016

Land between Frenze Hall Lane and Walcott Green in Diss which is proposed for development.

Land between Frenze Hall Lane and Walcott Green in Diss which is proposed for development.

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2016

A contentious housing bid to build 142 homes in Diss has been rejected by a planning committee much to the delight of campaigners.

The application from Persimmon Homes to build the houses on farmland to the north of Frenze Hall Lane was refused on Wednesday by South Norfolk Council’s development management committee due to aspects of its design and layout which councillor Barry Stone called “absolutely awful”.

The application had received widespread criticism from councillors and residents - 300 of which signed a petition opposing the development.

The application received 95 letters of objection and a 
residents group with 200 members, called Diss-Organised, was established.

More than 30 residents 
turned up to the meeting and clapped and cheered when the result they were hoping for was given.

Joyce Thomas, one of the Diss-Organised founders, said: “We’ve won the battle but we haven’t won it on the grounds we would have liked. The site is in the wrong place. The main thing we don’t want is to have Falcon Avenue as an access road. We need to not give up and we will now hold another meeting. We are very happy.”

At the meeting the committee voted against the plan on the grounds of poor design, and the form, bulk and massing of the plots.

Of particular concern to the committee was the collection of houses at the north of the development.

Councillor Alison Thomas said if they went on a design tour in a few years time the committee would have regretted their decision had they approved it.

She said: “It’s a poor design and I hope the developers come back with something and engage with the community and bring something the residents would accept.”

A representative for Persimmon Homes said they had worked proactively with town council and residents on the layout.

Diss Town Council twice recommended to the planning authority, South Norfolk Council, to refuse the application – which Persimmon Homes had reviewed and resubmitted – after 
concerns over traffic were not addressed.

What are your thoughts? Email rebecca.murphy@archant.co.uk

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