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Building begins on 'second Cromer lighthouse' at site of old zoo

PUBLISHED: 15:05 08 August 2019 | UPDATED: 10:22 09 August 2019

An architect's drawing of the 2.5-storey home planned on Howard's Hill, Cromer, by Russell Wright

An architect's drawing of the 2.5-storey home planned on Howard's Hill, Cromer, by Russell Wright

Archant

Building has begun on a controversial two-and-a-half-storey building on Cromer ridge that was dubbed by residents as the "second Cromer lighthouse".

Residents of Howard's Hill and Fulcher Avenue are unhappy with a planning app for a 2.5 storey house, complete with viewing toward, at the top of Howard's Hill. They say it will ruin their privacy and be visible from Beeston Hill, Cromer Lighthouse and Happy Valley. Pictured is site taken from common land adjoining it. 

Picture: MARK BULLIMOREResidents of Howard's Hill and Fulcher Avenue are unhappy with a planning app for a 2.5 storey house, complete with viewing toward, at the top of Howard's Hill. They say it will ruin their privacy and be visible from Beeston Hill, Cromer Lighthouse and Happy Valley. Pictured is site taken from common land adjoining it. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Plans for the four-bedroom house, on land at the old zoo, were first submitted to North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) in October 2015 by Swallowtail Properties Ltd.

The design was condemned by opponents, with more than 40 official objections.

They said the building, which will feature a viewing tower and a sun lounge glazed on four sides, would infringe on their privacy and a number of trees would be lost.

At the time of the first planning submission to NNDC David Groves, spokesman for the objectors, said the house would "stick out like another lighthouse".

Residents of Howard's Hill and Fulcher Avenue are unhappy with a planning app for a 2.5 storey house, complete with viewing toward, at the top of Howard's Hill. They say it will ruin their privacy and be visible from Beeston Hill, Cromer Lighthouse and Happy Valley. The view into Cromer taken from common land adjoining it. 

Picture: MARK BULLIMOREResidents of Howard's Hill and Fulcher Avenue are unhappy with a planning app for a 2.5 storey house, complete with viewing toward, at the top of Howard's Hill. They say it will ruin their privacy and be visible from Beeston Hill, Cromer Lighthouse and Happy Valley. The view into Cromer taken from common land adjoining it. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

A decision was made on the plans in July 2016 where NNDC permitted the building, if the planners agreed to some conditions.

Conditions include telling the council of any exterior fittings such as lights and window, door and render colour, no trees being destroyed and if a tree is damaged, it must be replaced by the next planting season.

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The building itself, on Howards Hill, will be set behind a 2m high wall and gates.

Residents of Howard's Hill and Fulcher Avenue are unhappy with a planning app for a 2.5 storey house, complete with viewing toward, at the top of Howard's Hill. They say it will ruin their privacy and be visible from Beeston Hill, Cromer Lighthouse and Happy Valley.

Picture: MARK BULLIMOREResidents of Howard's Hill and Fulcher Avenue are unhappy with a planning app for a 2.5 storey house, complete with viewing toward, at the top of Howard's Hill. They say it will ruin their privacy and be visible from Beeston Hill, Cromer Lighthouse and Happy Valley. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

The developer, Pike Partnership, said: "The layout creates a flow of related internal and external spaces on five floors rising in half-storey connections.

"The line is essentially terraced down the hill, enclosing outside terraces to catch different times of the day, often related to the rise of the room within.

"The design is appropriate for the site in that it attempts to reflect the local landscape rather than vernacular character of the area.

"This room only enables distant views. No overlooking is possible to the south because of the screening provided by the roof of the sun terrace."

Lisa the lioness escapes from Cromer Zoo, 5th January 1984. Picture: Archant LibraryLisa the lioness escapes from Cromer Zoo, 5th January 1984. Picture: Archant Library

The land was run as a zoo by Olga Kerr from 1962. In 1984 a 400lb lioness named Lisa escaped from the zoo.

A 16-man squad of police officers rushed from Norwich to capture the lion, which was shot dead by police.

Building on the land, which has not been used since 1994, began on July 25, 2019 and is expected to be complete by October 10, 2020.

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