Tuddenham Lodge owners hope it’s second time lucky for bid to secure its future

The Lodge at North Tuddenham. Picture: Ian Burt

The Lodge at North Tuddenham. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

The owners of a mid Norfolk pub have resubmitted a planning application to develop part of the site and improve facilities after support from the community.

Breckland planners had refused a bid by Norfolk Holdings Ltd to improve The Lodge at North Tuddenham by doubling the size of the garden and car park, adding a village shop and building five starter homes.

But villagers turned out in force to voice their frustration at a special parish council meeting called to discuss the decision.

Landlady Vikki King said the development would help to ensure a long term future for the business.

'We celebrate 10 years this year and have won awards in recognition for our food,' she said. 'We are a destination pub with a good reputation but we need the additional parking and garden and a village shop to ensure the future viability of the pub.

'Our business rates have increased drastically this last year and this application will help us to maintain and grow our business. Without it the future is less certain.

'The village and I were so frustrated when we learnt, despite a petition of 140 signatures and the backing and support of CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale), we did not have the support of the majority of the parish council or Breckland planning authority.'

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Breckland refused the application on grounds that it was outside the settlement boundary and the proposal would 'introduce new development in an unsustainable location'.

North Tuddenham Parish Council said it felt the design was not in keeping with the rural setting and had concerns about the impact of the proposal on the potential future development of land outside the central areas of existing housing within the village.

A vote at the parish meeting saw 65 out of 70 in favour of the application.

Rob Walton of Norfolk Holdings Ltd said. 'We were naturally disappointed not to have obtained planning permission as the majority of the village of North Tuddenham want to see this development proceed.

'Our investment will help to ensure the future viability of The Lodge and will add a much needed village shop and five starter homes. We hope that this time round the application will receive approval.'

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