Anger as controversial Costessey homes plan revived

Controversial plans for 70 new homes on the outskirts of Norwich have been revived - having been narrowly refused last summer.

An application for the homes in Townhouse Road, Costessey was turned down by members of South Norfolk Council's planning committee last August.

Outline permission had been requested by Green and Norwich Consolidated for the new homes on a 2.5 hectare (about 6.2 acres) plot next to Carrs Hill Wood, which sits in the Tud Valley, as well as a new access road.

Despite the application contravening several of the council's own planning policies, officers had recommended the proposals for approval in the light the district is lacking a five-year land supply for residential developments, as stipulated by the government.

But more than 40 letters of objection from local residents were lodged against the plans, while the owners of the wood and Costessey Parish Council also strongly opposed the proposals, which led to it being turned down.

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However, it has emerged that a revised application to secure outline permission for the site has been submitted to South Norfolk Council.

Tim East, who represents Old Costessey on the district council, said he would once again be opposing the application.

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He said: 'There is hardly any difference between this application and the last one. It is speculative and opportunistic and we will be arguing against it.'

In the submission to South Norfolk Council, the applicant states the development would be mainly two or three-bedroom homes, with a few four-bedroom houses.

They say it will integrate with the housing which already exists in Costessey, with footpath and cycle links, including a footbridge over the River Tud.

They add that section 106 contributions will bring 'direct benefits' to Costessey. including new bus stops and open space.

A spokesman for the applicants said: 'We remain of the opinion that there are strong planning grounds for residential development of this site.

'This was reflected by the lengthy and finely balanced debates at South Norfolk Council's planning committee in determination of the previous application and the Officer's recommendation for approval.

'The new application provides additional information against robust methodologies to address the planning committee's reasons for refusal.

'This includes photomontages and modelling of the indicative layout to further assess the impact of the site's development upon its surroundings.

'More detailed analysis has also been undertaken to demonstrate the site's proximity to essential services. 'In summary, additional work has been undertaken to demonstrate that there are no fundamental planning policy grounds or other material considerations that would prevent the site coming forward for the 70 dwellings proposed.'

• Are you battling a planning application where you live? Call Evening News reporter Dan Grimmer on 01603 772375 or email

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