Public given their say on proposed sale of car park in Fakenham

An artist's impression of the proposed housing at Highfields Road car park in Fakenham. Picture: Nor

An artist's impression of the proposed housing at Highfields Road car park in Fakenham. Picture: North Norfolk District Council - Credit: Archant

People in Fakenham are being given the opportunity to have their say over council plans to sell one of the town's car parks in order to make way for a new homes.

North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) is proposing the sale of the Highfields Road car park for residential accommodation for the over 55s and is asking for views on the idea and what should be done with the money raised from any sale.

Councillor Judy Oliver, cabinet member for asset commercialisation, said: 'By 2020 the district council's grant from government will be down to zero and we want to make sure we use our assets for the benefit of the community.

'By proposing a sale of the land for residential development we would not only provide more homes for people to live in, we would also raise useful funds.

'Our focus is on how the money raised could be used to attract future investment into Fakenham and boost its economy. For example, the funds could be invested in Fakenham public toilets, or provide support for start-up businesses in the town or be invested in the area overall.'

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In an online consultation booklet the council has addressed questions that residents may have about the loss of the car park. In one section on parking it states: 'NNDC believes there is sufficient parking in Fakenham to meet demand.'

But Fakenham's mayor George Acheson argues this is not the case, particularly when viewed long term.

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'They believe that there is sufficient parking but Highfield is an area of narrow streets which are already over-parked, impeding the traffic flow,' he said.

'The housing nearby is also Edwardian or older and they don't have their own parking. Many residents park at Highfields at night.'

Details in the booklet are limited but the council does try to address this by proposing a formal agreement which will provide an access road to enable residents on nearby Church Lane to continue parking at the location.

Mr Acheson adds that plans are already in place for 950 new homes in Fakenham, and those new homes should meet the housing demand that the council says exists.

'They say there is demand for homes for people over-55 but we are getting over 950 homes, surely we can meet demand.'

Find all the information on the council's proposals on their website.

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