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Concerns as 279 homes bid comes back under the spotlight

PUBLISHED: 06:30 27 June 2018 | UPDATED: 13:00 27 June 2018

The revised application to to be heard at Breckland Council Offices, in Dereham, in July.  Picture: Ian Burt

The revised application to to be heard at Breckland Council Offices, in Dereham, in July. Picture: Ian Burt

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Serious concerns remain over a major planning application to bring 279 homes to Dereham.

Breckland Council Offices, Dereham. Picture: Ian BurtBreckland Council Offices, Dereham. Picture: Ian Burt

Orbit Homes has revised and resubmitted its application to build the homes, off Greenfields Road.

The plans, which have previously been turned down by Breckland Council’s planning committee due to concerns over a lack of space set aside for sport and recreational activity as well as drainage issues, are due to be heard again on July 30.

Dereham Town Council commissioned an independent specialist to examine Orbit Homes’ revised proposal.

In feedback to Breckland Council, the town council states: “The revised layout still does not meet the requirements of either DC11 or ENV04 because the applicant has not demonstrated that all the proposed “open areas for sport” can be laid out for a sport and that the “open area for sport” which is also an attenuation basin would have sport as its primary purpose and would be available for sport for the majority of the time.

Breckland Council Offices, Dereham. Picture: Ian BurtBreckland Council Offices, Dereham. Picture: Ian Burt

“The town council has now submitted expert evidence to demonstrate that this areas would not be suitable for sports.”

Dereham Town Council has previously argued that the town has a shortfall of outdoor playing spaces so developers should fulfil their obligations and not put profit before children’s play.

Ian Fieldhouse, regional director for the East at Orbit, said: “Orbit’s application was deferred in December as planning committee members required the area around the proposed ‘multi use games area’ to be increased in size to ensure there was a 30 metre buffer between it, and the nearest dwellings.

“We submitted a revised layout showing the requested buffer zone on January 5. Dereham Town Council commented that we had not consulted with them before submitting a revised plan. We agreed to meet with the town council and Breckland Council to discuss their revisions and the provision of space for outdoor sports more generally.

“This meeting took place on May 1 and all parties agreed the best way forward and the amounts of open space to be provided within the scheme. We submitted further revised plans and supporting drainage information.

“We have been advised that the Local Lead Flood Authority has approved the updated drainage strategy.”

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