Community group vows to fight Welney housing estate plans

At the community area in Welney are (from left) Paul Fox, Liz Laws, Jen Warne and Sheree Edmunds. Pi

At the community area in Welney are (from left) Paul Fox, Liz Laws, Jen Warne and Sheree Edmunds. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Members have vowed to continue fighting West Norfolk Council's plans to build a housing estate on a village recreation ground that over £60,000 was fundraised locally to regenerate.

The council has submitted an outline planning application to build 16 homes on the land it owns at Chestnut Avenue in Welney, near Downham Market. It means the project could be bulldozed to make way for the development.

Members of Welney's Recreation Ground Users Group have worked hard to fundraise and transform the site, known locally as Sandgate Corner, from overgrown wasteland into open space for the community.

Paul Fox, the group's chairman, said: 'We have put so much effort into this project and will continue to fight the borough council against these plans.'

When finished, the space will include a children's play area, a picnic spot and wildlife meadow.

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West Norfolk Council has currently licensed the whole site to the group on a year-by-year basis; an agreement is also in place for the group to occupy the land for five years.

But a council spokesman explained it is exploring the development potential of a number of sites it owns.

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He said: 'The site in Welney is included in this, as it has been identified for a number of years as a site that may have development potential.'

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