Bid for 31 homes in village is approved

Aerial image of 31 home development site at Heath Road, Hockering

The 31 homes are set to be located within the dark, boot-shaped field in the centre of the image. Heath Road can be seen running diagonally downwards. - Credit: Google

Three extra homes will be built on a development in mid Norfolk, despite concerns being raised over parking and flooding.

At a Monday meeting of Breckland District Council’s planning committee, councillors looked again at a proposal for homes on land west of Heath Road in Hockering, off the A47 between Norwich and Dereham. 

The committee had in September 2019 given outline permission for 28 homes on the site, but the developers re-submitted the plans in May 2021 to include an extra three. 

At the meeting, Hockering parish councillor Richard Hawker said: “Hockering Parish Council objected unanimously to this application, as they did for the previous application."

He added: “We have many problems in the village over parking and access, especially in estates like this. Three new accesses onto Heath Road will cause inevitable traffic conflicts."

Mr Hawker said he also had concerns about flooding.

"However dealt with, surface water will end up in the nearby stream, already under pressure from recent estates," he said, adding: “This stream is a tributary of the Tud, a highly-valued chalk stream with ecological importance and contamination is a huge problem.”

James Platt, an agent representing the developers, pointed out that the proposal “presents an opportunity to contribute towards the supply of homes in the district", helping the government in its aim of meeting a rising demand for houses. 

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Mr Platt said the new plan was “a more effective and viable use of the land within a sustainable location".

He also highlighted that Norfolk County Council had raised no highway-related objections to the plans. 

Councillor Gordon Bambridge. Photo: Breckland Council

Conservative councillor for Upper Wensum Gordon Bambridge warned about the lack of parking in Hockering, and on the need to protect the River Tud. - Credit: Archant

Councillor Gordon Bambridge warned the committee about “the capacity for the cars that belong to those houses to be parked within the site". 

“There is no car parking available within the village and certainly not on the road outside [the development]," he said.

And he added that the River Tud was regarded as one of the purest chalk streams in the UK and needed protection from the development’s run-off. 

Councillors gave their unanimous approval to the new outline plan, on the condition that their policies around car parking and surface water run-off are obeyed.

Breckland councillor and Swanton Morley Parish Council chairman, Roger Atterwill, is concerned about

Independent councillor Roger Atterwill said he hoped the attached conditions would "focus the mind of the applicant" in meeting them. - Credit: Archant

Councillor Roger Atterwill said he hoped the attached conditions would “focus the mind of the applicant".

Mr Platt said he saw no problem with the associated conditions.
 

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