Villages ‘should not be part of greater King’s Lynn’, parish councils warn

West Winch village sign ENGANL00120130417093051
West Winch village sign ENGANL00120130417093051

Two nearby villages which could see 1,600 new homes built over the next decade should not become part of a “greater King’s Lynn”, community leaders have claimed.

The parish councils in West Winch and North Runcton have published a draft neighbourhood plan setting out how they believe future development should be accommodated.

And residents have until the beginning of next month to have their say on the ideas.

The villages are at the centre of the largest portion of West Norfolk Council’s current blueprint for development in the period up to 2026.

Around a quarter of the 6,500 homes which the plan says will be needed across the whole borough have been envisaged for the area.

The parish councils say their proposals are designed to address the key development aims set out in planning policy documents which were previously adopted by the borough authority.

But they also warned: “Residents do not wish to be part of ‘greater King’s Lynn’, but wish to retain village character and an ostensibly rural backdrop to settlement wherever possible.”

A key concern about the scale of development proposed for the area has been whether sufficient infrastructure, particularly transport links, will be included.

Although a relief road has been proposed as part of future developments, the document warns that the route could become a “significant barrier” to cyclists, walkers and horse riders using surrounding lanes.

The document said: “It is essential for both existing and future residents that there are attractive safe links between neighbourhoods, and especially social and recreational facilities.

“Such route provision will help to reduce car dependence and local car journeys.”

The parish councils say foot and cycle paths should be provided on both sides of the relief road and separated from the road by a verge, hedge or trees.

They also believe a 30 miles per hour speed limt should be considered in some areas.

Comments on the plan should be submitted by midnight on Tuesday, September 1.

The submissions will then be reviewed by a steering group set up to oversee the development of the document before it is submitted to the borough and an independent planning inspector.