Site visit over Briston tree felling bid

Members of a council planning committee will go and inspect for themselves a woodland which acts as an odour and dust barrier between houses and a Bernard Matthews turkey farm - and a section of which could be cut down.

Members of a council planning committee will go and inspect for themselves a woodland which acts as an odour and dust barrier between houses and a Bernard Matthews turkey farm - and a section of which could be cut down.

As part of a plan to build two new reservoirs on the Stody Estate, near Briston, a new access road would need to be built through woodland at Turkey Farm on Norwich Road.

This would lead to 250 trees being felled according to officials at North Norfolk District Council.

While the reservoir plan itself has caused upset among local people, the prospect of losing part of the woodland barrier has caused further concern, prompting an attempt to have the trees in question given a formal tree preservation order which would put controls on the management of the woodland. The order would not stop the road being built or create a blanket ban on the felling of trees, but could be used to force a replanting scheme, which would not necessarily happen otherwise.


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At a meeting of the district council's west area development control committee yesterday, members heard arguments from both sides of the debate as they tried to decide whether to impose the order.

Briston Parish Council spokesman David Chambers said when the screening woodland was put in during the 1990s, it was a 'job well done' and he appealed for the trees to be left as they were.

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Tony Serne, speaking on behalf of villagers, said the woodland had been very successful to date and to remove part of it would be 'no less than an act of vandalism'.

David Reger, company secretary at Bernard Matthews, said the company took its responsibility for planting schemes very seriously and said he was confused at the justification of the order.

'The order is entirely unnecessary in my view,' said Mr Reger.

Although there was some support for granting the order among the committee, members agreed instead to visit the site to view the woodland and its relationship to the houses and the farm.

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