A step closer for Costessey centre

Dreams of a long-awaited Costessey community centre have taken a giant step towards fruition after planners gave its cutting-edge design the thumbs up.

News that South Norfolk Council has given approval to a modern centre for Queens Hill led to cries of 'hallelujah' in the chamber and follow eight years of delays and frustration.

Now, a group inspired by their success in helping create the �1.5m Costessey Centre, of Longwater Lane, last year anticipate that land and money promised by the consortium of estate developers will be coming within months.

Vivienne Bell is chairman of the parish council and was the district councillor to exclaim her delight at news of the approval.

She said: 'Once the Costessey Centre was built it gave us confidence that we could deliver another building as well.

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'We are in some ways an old community but we've also got a strong new community, especially with Queens Hills, and we just want to be the best parish in Norfolk in what we do. We're throwing down the gauntlet and we want to press onwards with this.'

The parish council will be leading the build and anticipates the consortium will deliver �675,000 of funding for the centre shortly. It also plans to contribute to the building work �200,000 with profits made from sale of an old youth centre for development and the parish halls earlier this year.

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Now, Mrs Bell said that if all went well the modern-looking single storey centre, could be built by the start of next year. It is designed by architects Vincent and Gorbing, who were responsible for the Costessey Centre, and would include changing rooms, a meeting room and two outdoor football pitches. She added: 'I could understand if Queens Hills residents don't believe it till they see it and I don't blame them but I hope they will be proud of it.'

•Had some great community news? Contact Norwich Evening News reporter John Owens on john.owens@archant.co.uk

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