A bid to build a new car park in a tourist hotspot which is falling into the sea has been approved. 

North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) has given the green light to plans to create a new facility further inland than the current site, with a new access road off the village's Lighthouse Lane.       

Happisburgh Parish Council (HPC), who submitted the bid, has insisted the move is needed to address the creeping coastal erosion that would one day see the current car park, off Beach Road, fall into the sea.    

The plans will be built in stages, with the access road built first. 

The new car park is unlikely to open until the existing one has been rendered unusable by erosion. 

Replacing the facility has become increasingly urgent, with Happisburgh having seen large sections of cliffside collapse into the sea in recent weeks following strong winds and storms. 

David Mole, chairman of HPC told, Thursday’s planning Committee the car park has become a “big feature” of Happisburgh’s economy.  

Eastern Daily Press: Happisburgh's Beach Road car park from aboveHappisburgh's Beach Road car park from above (Image: Mike Page)

“But the erosion is creeping forward daily, we are going to lose the entrance to the car park,” he said. 

The income from the car park is used to maintain the public toilets and the village generally, including paying for verge cutting. 

But neighbours were split on the issue, with some accusing the parish council of not listening to their concerns.  

One said: “The proposed car park is for the benefit of visiting motorists rather than the residents of Happisburgh, there are other options available to the parish council for accommodating visitors that have a more modest and fair impact on the residents.” 

But other speakers said objectors were “not considering the good of the whole community” praising the new access track for having more passing places than the current road. 

The application was approved 13 votes for and one abstention.