Aylsham homes plan turned down at Broadland meeting

Plans for a 300-home development on the edge of Aylsham were refused by Broadland councillors at a planning committee meeting today.

Welbeck Strategic Land had proposed to develop the land in three phases over a six-year period, with the intention of creating an 'entrance to Aylsham', and potentially freeing up land to improve Aylsham High School's facilities.

But the outline application for a 90-acre meadows site north of Sir Williams Lane was recommended for refusal by councillors at the meeting.

A report to council said it would be an 'unjustifiable incursion into the countryside', and added that the community benefit of giving land to the school to be developed as a family sports village for school and community use was 'not sufficiently compelling' to go against the development plan. The plans had received six letters of support and 23 letters against.

The council heard from resident Susan Chick, from Sir Williams Lane, that the plans were totally out of character and would increase traffic, and she urged refusal.

Meanwhile, Eileen Springall, chairman of Aylsham town council, called on councillors to defer a decision.

However, Broadland councillor Tony Adams said there was no reason for a deferral, and said: 'To defer would mean that we liked the plans in principle. It would be a bit like the Greek situation where, if you cannot pay your debts, we will pay them for you, but while solving one problem, would create more.'

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Earlier, Erik Pagano, representing the developers, had highlighted the benefits of the scheme.

He said: 'The plans include giving the school 15 acres of land for the sum of �1, and transferring 17 acres of land to the council as public open space. This is a 'win win' scheme for all.'

Broadland's core strategy allows for a minimum of 300 new homes in Aylsham.