Verdict over controversial plans for 110 homes and primary school delayed
PUBLISHED: 15:44 10 October 2019 | UPDATED: 15:44 10 October 2019
Plans to build up to 110 new homes and a primary school in Holt have been deferred.
Members of North Norfolk District Council planning committee voted to put the controversial proposals on hold until new and independent reports are produced into traffic safety and access and provision of school places.
At the start of the meeting, leader of the council, Sarah Butikofer, declared that she would not vote on the school plan due to being too clear on her opinion in the past.
When talking about the plans, she said: "I am constantly bombarded, I receive more emails in my inbox over any other issue for traffic calming measures to be implemented. So why highways can come to us and say they do not have concerns? I do not understand."
The council received 67 letters of objection on their planning website for the development, which would include affordable homes and also a public open space and recreation facilities.
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John McKenzie, one of the developers behind the plan, said: "School children will exceed the amount of places in a few years time and I would also like to remind you that Norfolk County Council's highway agency said the access was acceptable."
Another concern for councillors is that the site is part of the countryside and residential dwelling would not usually be built on this type land.
Duncan Baker, councillor for Holt, said: "It is not an acceptable site and we do not just rip up the rule book for the sake of building because it is available today. This is just a sticking plaster rather than finding the right solution for the long run.
"It is in an area of countryside and I don't agree that we should be breaking the rules to match the case. We should be looking after our countryside, not building on it."
A public consultation was held on the plans last year and, following responses, the new proposals include changes to the scheme design.
Four years ago the developer's bid to build 170 homes on the site was refused planning permission after a failed appeal.
Back in 2015 the council's development committee refused Gladman's application partly because it said the site was outside Holt's development boundary.