Carbrooke estate could get community centre with 100 new homes

Wasteland which borders the Blenheim Grange estate on the outskirts of Watton. This is where parents

Wasteland which borders the Blenheim Grange estate on the outskirts of Watton. This is where parents say their children are forced to play. Pictured, from left, Phil Sampher, Emma Cockman, Mike Wormall, Kristina Ireland and Jorden Leverton. Pictures: IAN BURT - Credit: IAN BURT

A residents association is in good spirits after the latest developer to apply to build houses on their Carbrooke estate pledged to provide a community centre too.

Residents of Blenheim Grange in Carbrooke are unhapy with the some aspects of the estate. Picture: I

Residents of Blenheim Grange in Carbrooke are unhapy with the some aspects of the estate. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: IAN BURT

A residents' association is in good spirits after the latest developer to apply to build houses on its Carbrooke estate pledged to provide a community centre too.

The latest planning application on the Blenheim Grange estate proposes to build another 106 houses alongside a permanent community centre – replacing the shipping container which has served as one so far.

Both Carbrooke Parish Council and the Blenheim Grange Residents' Association had lobbied developers Westmere Homes for a communal building, in place of more affordable housing.

Phil Samper, residents' association chairman, said the new homes were a 'fair trade-off' to spruce up a dilapidated part of the estate and get a new community facility. 'It has got the blessing of the residents' association. We are over the moon,' he said.

Residents of Blenheim Grange in Carbrooke are unhapy with the some aspects of the estate. Picture: I

Residents of Blenheim Grange in Carbrooke are unhapy with the some aspects of the estate. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: IAN BURT

'Where the new homes are going to go will make that part of the estate look nice, rather than a concrete slab and a lot of overgrown shrubs.

'With the parish council and the residents' association working hand in hand with Westmere Homes, we will get a community centre, and that has got to be a good thing.'

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Mr Samper added that the residents' association had a hand in designing the room, which will be used by groups such as Sure Start and the parish council.

'The community on an estate like this should work with developers to create facilities that are not only beneficial for the people who already live there, but for the new residents who will be moving in,' he said.

Carbrooke Parish Council chairman Debbie Muller said the estate's residents were 'still struggling' with the lack of facilities.

'We suggested to the developers that, instead of more affordable housing, the community centre would be a much better way of spending the money,' she said.

'At the moment there is a huge slab of concrete there which is an eyesore. We are glad someone is going to build on it because it means it will not be an eyesore for much longer.

'If it is a development which is doing something for the community, then we are happy.'

Mid Norfolk MP George Freeman wrote in support of the push for a community centre, stating: 'This will be a great and much-needed resource for the community which will have such a huge number of benefits.'

Have you got a community story? Email bethany.whymark@archant.co.uk

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