Controversial plans for new 255-home estate set to get council approval
PUBLISHED: 15:10 10 January 2020 | UPDATED: 17:33 10 January 2020
A council is set to discuss controversial plans to build more than 250 homes in a Norfolk town - more than five years after the idea was originally proposed.
Housebuilder Hopkins Homes applied for planning permission from Breckland Council to build 255 homes in Dereham.
But the application was subject to delays including being deferred after MP George Freeman warned of fears over a lack of public trust.
The council were asked by the outsourced planning department Capita to make a decision on the application at a council meeting in September last year.
But it was delayed as the consultation period on the proposal was still ongoing.
Mr Freeman said making the decision would jeopardise public trust in the planning system.
But now the scheme is finally set to come before councillors at a meeting on Monday, January 10.
The proposed homes are slated to be built on a 17.2 hectare piece of land south-east of Dereham town centre and south of a lane known as Dumpling Green.
The development would also see two new junctions built for cars to access Yaxham Road as well as an area of open green space.
And - if the plans are approved - Hopkins Homes would have to pay a tax towards local healthcare, roads and schools costs, known as Section 106 obligations.
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The developer would have to pay around £1.5m worth, which go to:
- Education - £897,408 to Toftwood Infant and Junior Schools
- Library - £19,125
- Healthcare - £92,575
- Footbridge - £500,000
- And £7,650 to improve the area's signage and boardwalks.
The total costs of £1,516,758 contributions would be on top of providing and maintaining open spaces and green infrastructure within the development.
However, within the 255 homes, 46 (18pc of the development) would be affordable homes.
Objections to the scheme were received from Dereham Town Council and Yaxham Parish Council.
A legal letter from Leathes Prior Solicitors, sent on behalf of the town council, described the transport assessment as "defective and fundamentally flawed".
While a response from the parish council stated it "strongly objects" to the scheme.
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