Go ahead for 100 homes in village
PUBLISHED: 14:48 07 October 2019 | UPDATED: 14:48 07 October 2019
Plans for 100 new homes in a Norfolk village got the go ahead today.
Developer Amber REI wants to build 70 homes on the 2Agriculture feed mill on Lynn Road, Stoke Ferry, near Downham Market.
It wants to add another 30 properties to a nearby storage site on Furlong Road.
West Norfolk council's planning committee approved both at its meeting this morning - despite objections from people living around the two sites.
Earlier, villagers expressed their disappointment at a public consultation, which they said was a box-ticking exercise.
They also wanted 2Agriculture to refurbish listed buildings it owns around the village's market square, such as Stoke Ferry Hall.
The parish council said it wanted a commitment to restoring them, fearing they would be left to decay if left out of the plans.
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And there were also objections to a green field near the centre of the village being included in the Lynn Road proposal.
But David Onions, for the developers, said the listed buildings had not been included in the schemes on the advice of the council and historic England.
He said an extra access would be included onto Lynn Road to reduce traffic, while removing the mill and feed store would remove a significant number of HGVs from the roads.
Asking councillors to approve the plans, he added they would clearly bring "significant benefit" to Stoke Ferry.
Councillors queried whether 100 houses were needed to cover the cost of demolishing the mill and feed store.
Martin Storey said: "We owe it to Stoke Ferry to get this right and the only way we're going to do that is get the right properties in the right places."
Planning officers said the council could serve notices ordering repairs in the event of problems with the listed buildings.
Calls for the Lynn Road application to be deferred pending a master plan for Stoke Ferry were defeated. There were also concerns that developing the Furlong Drove site would lead to a loss of employment land in the village.
But councillors had earlier been recommended to approve both outline applications in officers' reports. Both were approved.