Councillors see red over Yellow Shop eyesore site in Wells

Two district councillors have expressed concerns about the lack of action on part of an eyesore that has scarred Wells seafront for more than seven years.

News that demolition work has started on Gray's Arcade, previously reported in the EDP, has been welcomed with open arms.

But the fact that no such work has yet been undertaken on the adjoining Yellow Shop has caused alarm.

The two buildings, which are separately owned, were devastated by fire in January 2005 and have remained a derelict, burnt-out eyesore ever since.

Novus Homes (Norfolk) is redeveloping the former arcade site and has planning permission to build a four-storey property with three shops and nine apartments.

Demolition work, which started last month, is expected to be finished by Easter.

Building work is due to begin in autumn and to last between a year and 15 months.

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The owner of the Yellow Shop obtained planning permission last year to build two shops, three flats and a maisonette, but there is still no sign of any work being done on the building.

Jonathan Savory, North Norfolk district councillor for Wells, told a meeting of the town council this week: 'I have strong concerns about the Yellow Shop and have asked the district council to chase the owner to find out what is happening.

'We could be left with a half-developed site on the Quayside, which would be a disaster.

'It was hoped that the two developers would work together on this, but that does not appear to be happening.'

The derelict state of Gray's Arcade and the Yellow Shop has been a source of frustration for Wells residents and visitors for several years and prompted North Norfolk District Council to consider making its first ever compulsory purchase order.

Mr Savory said: 'The district council could still use the threat of a compulsory purchase order on the Yellow Shop if no work goes ahead.'

Wells's other district councillor, Peter Terrington, told the town council that he had raised concerns about the Yellow Shop with North Norfolk District Council's strategic director, Steve Blatch.

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