Plans for industrial estate on outskirts of Norwich given narrow council approval

The proposed site for a new industrial estate at Keswick.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The proposed site for a new industrial estate at Keswick.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

Plans for an industrial estate on the outskirts of the city which attracted opposition from two Norfolk household names have received council approval - by the narrowest of margins.

Jake Humphrey

Jake Humphrey - Credit: C1 PHOTOGRAPHY

For the second time in a year plans for an industrial estate in Keswick have gone before South Norfolk Council's planning committee, after an initial bid was refused last June.

The application had been publicly opposed by BT Sport presenter Jake Humphrey and Norwich City legend Darren Huckerby, who both live locally.

However, variations made by applicant MAHB were able to persuade just enough members for the project to move onto the next planning phase.

At a meeting held on Wednesday, the committee voted six to five in favour of its officer's recommendation to grant planning permission.

Darren Huckerby before the Premier League International Cup Semi-Final match at Carrow Road, Norwich

Darren Huckerby before the Premier League International Cup Semi-Final match at Carrow Road, NorwichPicture by Matthew Usher/Focus Images Ltd +44 7902 24205431/03/2017 - Credit: Matthew Usher/Focus Images Ltd


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It now means a full planning application can be submitted for the project, which will see offices, industrial units and warehouses built on a triangle of land between the A140 near Harford Bridge Tesco and the B1113.

However, the approval comes with no fewer than 33 different conditions, which the developers must meet if they wish for the project to be brought to life.

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The decision came in spite of numerous objections, with 'Stop the Blot', a campaign against the project receiving the high profile backing of Mr Humphrey and Mr Huckerby - the latter of whom was present at the meeting.

Discussing the application, councillors raised concerns over the impact it would have on the openness of the Norwich Southern Bypass Landscape Protection Zone.

Fears were also raised over additional traffic it would create and that 'rat-running' could occur down the Low Road in Keswick.

However, when it came to the vote, the recommendation was carried and the plans were given the go ahead.

Members to vote against the plans included Christopher Kemp, Vivienne Bell and Murray Gray.

Kevin Hanner of Keswick and Intwood Parish Council had urged members to refuse the application.

He said: 'As you will be aware, the previous application was rejected due to its potential impact on the landscape of Norwich.

'The parish council does not believe the resubmitted application contains anything to alter the fundamental principles of the original decision.'

Developers have said the estate could create more than a thousand jobs.

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