Plans for 36 homes on old school playing field site

Up to 36 houses could be built on 1.4 hectares of land to the south of Chapel Street in Shipdham. Da

Up to 36 houses could be built on 1.4 hectares of land to the south of Chapel Street in Shipdham. David Winch on site. Picture: Breckland Bridge - Credit: Archant

Up to 36 homes could be built on a former school playing field site in Shipdham, near Dereham.

An outline planning application was lodged by Breckland Bridge, the joint venture partnership between Breckland council and The Land Group.

The headstones around the old Wesleyan graveyard would be removed and stored before being returned to the site following restoration work.

Until the 1960s, the site, to the south of Chapel Street, which is owned by Breckland council, was Thomas Bullock Primary School's playing fields before it relocated to Pound Green.

Land Group director David Winch said: "We wish to emphasise that Breckland Bridge has consulted extensively with all relevant stakeholders including members of the community, the parish council, ward councillors and Breckland's planning officers during the extensive preparation of the proposals.

"This dialogue will continue through the next stages which is why the final layout for the housing scheme remains in outline.

"The housing truly reflects the consensus and sensitivities of local people. A typical example of this is that Breckland council has agreed to remove the headstones around the old graveyard on site and store them carefully and return them to site when the restoration work is complete.

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"The considerable highway improvements relating to this application would be funded by grant monies from the Central Government Land Release Fund, which assists public sector asset holders to develop and deliver a range of projects which improve local services and economies. We are sure that this residential scheme will, if approved, be a popular one providing much needed housing and services for the district."

The development on 1.4 hectares of land would comprise a combination of two, three, and four-bedroom homes, most of which face into a central open space and also overlook a wildlife and ecology area along the Chapel Street frontage as well as the old Wesleyan graveyard.

To the north is a separate consented housing development and a village centre supermarket store. All three developments would benefit from an improved highway plan which will allow access into the old school playing field site.