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Village common land bid halted

PUBLISHED: 14:54 11 February 2009 | UPDATED: 15:01 07 July 2010

A village's plans to breathe new life into a piece of common land with boardwalks and fishing ponds have hit a brick wall.

Natural England wanted to build new board walk paths on land at Burgh Common in Swanton Morley to improve access and allow people to get to picturesque fishing spots.

A village's plans to breathe new life into a piece of common land with boardwalks and fishing ponds have hit a brick wall.

Natural England wanted to build new board walk paths on land at Burgh Common in Swanton Morley to improve access and allow people to get to picturesque fishing spots.

The land is sandwiched between the Worthing Road and River Wensum in the village.

But Breckland Council has refused planning permission for the scheme - saying they would require six car parking spots for visitors, a meeting of Swanton Morley Parish Council heard on Monday night.

Roger Atterwill, chairman of the council, said the group should back Natural England in appealing the decision and request officers from Breckland Council and the highways authority to come and view the site and see the detrimental effect creating car parking spaces on the land would have.

“We are not trying to make it a major tourist attraction,” he said. “It's just a nice thing to do to make it more accessible.”

The meeting heard there are already two parking spaces at the site self created by people stopping there, which was felt made them blend into the site rather than stick out like purpose built hard standings.

The council had previously been given a £500 grant by the Norfolk Fisheries Action Group to assist clearing the area as a parish amenity.

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