Villagers angry over road plan

A picture-postcard Norfolk village will be spoiled forever if developer's plan for an urban road to serve a secluded estate of detached homes wins planning approval, it was claimed yesterday.

A picture-postcard Norfolk village will be spoiled forever if developer's plan for an urban road to serve a secluded estate of detached homes wins planning approval, it was claimed yesterday.

Although Winterton Parish Council agrees that nine houses can be built on the site it is holding its hands up against attendant plans to turn Empsons Loke - the quiet unadopted road leading to them - to an access road which can serve up to 200 units.

Parish council chairman David Neve said turning the unmade 18-home loke into a twin-track urban road would mean sweeping away grass verges and greenery, and completely altering one of the main approaches to the tourist honeypot village famed for its wildlife-rich dunes and chocolate-box thatched cottages.

Members have already fought off a plan for 17 homes on the site and are gearing up for a second battle with Lowestoft-based Badger Building who withdrew a previous application.


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Mr Neve said the council was also unhappy with the design of the homes which were larger than most of the 620 others in the village and would dominate from their raised setting.

He added that the urban road scheme would destroy the tranquil vista of Black Street which meanders through the village in the shadow of the flint church.

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Most affected home owners had written letters of objection to the borough council, Mr Neve said, and he urged others to do the same.

Mr Neve said the village had done its bit for the borough's housing stock with a range of infill schemes creating 45 new dwellings, and that it would prefer 10 cottages at Empsons Loke with passing bays to cope with the extra traffic.

A 12-page document compiled by the parish council in answer to the application suggests that the application breaks a string of council policies that aim to conserve, protect and enhance the quality of the environment.

The document goes on to tag as “extremely excessive and unnec-essary” the highway authority's requirement of the type of road necessary to service the development.

Badger spokesman Ed Gilder said: “The land has been allocated for housing in the local plan. The access is designed to meet the county council's requirements. We have reduced it and it does provide a footpath along the frontage to the school.”

Senior borough planner Dean Minns said the Environment Agency had yet to formulate its response and that he did not expect it to go to committee until February 19.

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