Plans for 37,000 homes in and around Norwich on track, say council bosses

A High Court judge who ruled a blueprint for where thousands of houses should be built in and around Norwich was flawed has ruled the number of homes proposed does not need to be changed.

Council leaders say that ends uncertainty which could have led to speculative applications for homes from developers.

The joint core strategy outlines where 37,000 homes could be built in Norwich, parts of Broadland and parts of South Norfolk up to 2026.

A successful legal challenge by Salhouse campaigner Stephen Heard saw Mr Justice Ouseley rule that the councils behind the blueprint had not demonstrated why an area to the north east of Norwich was picked for up to 10,000 homes, ahead of alternative locations.

He told the councils, which make up the Greater Norwich Development Partnership (GNDP), to reassess the north-east growth triangle – which includes Rackheath, Old Catton, Spixworth and Thorpe St Andrew.

But the GNDP says the judge's final order makes clear the 37,000 home figure remains intact after the rejection of submissions by Mr Heard's legal team that the total should be cut and Broadland Gate Business Park expansion plans included in the growth triangle.

Andrew Proctor, leader of Broadland District Council and GNDP chairman, said: 'This ends the period of uncertainty and provides clarity for residents and businesses. It means we can move forward as a partnership, while looking again at plans for the growth triangle to the north-east of Norwich as directed by the judge, consulting our communities on the way.

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'I welcome the confirmation from the judge that the growth proposals for South Norfolk and Norwich remain unchanged.'

But Mr Heard accused the GNDP of more 'spin'. He said: 'They are trying to say that it is not significant, but it is and it is setting precedents nationally. They cannot get over the fact that a group of local residents took them to court and won.'

The GNDP aims to present its reassessment work on the growth triangle to councillors in July, with public consultation in August and September ahead of a public inquiry.

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