What was evident at the planning meeting for Marsh Lane was the lack of questions and debate by members of the committee on this major development, whereas many concerns were raised about increased traffic and flood risk for much smaller developments being considered.
Could it be that as the council is the owner and developer it is hardly likely to object to its own application? We know that applications to build on Lynnsport Leisure Park will be considered next. Lynnsport Leisure Park is not only greenfield land but also a much-loved and valued park, used by residents of all ages for free play and leisure. Lynnsport Park, along with Marsh Lane, has a Level 3 flood risk. The land becomes waterlogged like a sponge but holds the water which then slowly runs into the river. What will happen when it has houses, flats and car parks covering much of the land? This puts not only the new properties at risk but also existing properties in surrounding areas, occupied by people for many years. Who will buy the new properties? People from outside the area possibly? Only 15 per cent are affordable rent and therefore often out of the reach of many people. Will owners be able to get insurance and at what cost? The Department for Climate Change has asked that councils stop building over parks because they are adding to the problems which we are now seeing in other parts of the country. Why are we risking this here? Add to that the recent figures that the levels of childhood obesity in North Lynn are some of the highest in the country and information that shows poorer health, shorter life expectancy and income in the area. How can our council build over a park that is within walking distance of North Lynn and increase pollution from traffic on the new ‘access road’ that will no doubt back up and cause traffic queues for people living there? The council could lay small pitches, goal posts, netball posts, encourage children to get involved in activities that are free and use the park to its full potential, not build on it. Not everyone can afford fee-paying clubs and activities. Lynnsport Leisure Park was described as “The jewel in the crown of King’s Lynn” when it was developed and a £6.5 million investment in the community’s future health and vitality. There is an online petition at https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/public-inquiry-into-development-on-lynnsport-park calling for a public inquiry, we will also be collecting signatures at strategic points in Lynn. If you care about Lynn, Lynnsport Leisure Park, climate change and ruthless developers threatening where you live please sign the petition and support us.
Sue Bruce, Lynnsport Area Residents’ Association