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Application submitted for new Gayton primary school

Detailed proposals for a new primary school in a West Norfolk village have been submitted, more than four years after initial plans were first outlined.

County education chiefs are now proposing to develop a site in the heart of Gayton after their preferred option stalled because of flooding and traffic concerns.

But, although there is widespread support for a new school in the village, some nearby residents are concerned about the potential implications of the latest plan for their area.

Gayton - Village Sign. (23909518)
Gayton - Village Sign. (23909518)

The new application, if it is approved, would see a 210 place school, plus a nursery with capacity for 56 youngsters, built at West Hall Farm, off Springvale.

Documents published as part of the proposal said the site is currently overgrown and several mature trees would need to be removed if the scheme does proceed.

They added: "There is additional land to the east of the site which is in the ownership of Norfolk County Council, which could be used to facilitate future expansion of the school if required."

Plans to build a new school on this land in Gayton appear to have been abandoned after a proposal for a new site was submitted
Plans to build a new school on this land in Gayton appear to have been abandoned after a proposal for a new site was submitted

Several villagers have already voiced their support for the proposal, although some nearby residents say they are worried about the impact of extra traffic and potential extra costs for them, as they currently pay for the route to be maintained.

However, the report said Springvale will be improved and adopted as a public highway, meaning the county council would take over the responsibility for its upkeep, while buses would collect or drop off passengers from either Springvale or Winch Road.

The plans also include provision of facilities for the storage of up to 30 bikes and 40 scooters on the site.

And the papers added: "This location creates an opportunity to encourage walking and cycling."

No date has yet been set for when the application is likely to be considered by the county council, although West Norfolk Council, which is a statutory consultee, aims to submit its response by the end of the month.

The latest plans supercede an earlier proposal to build on land at the corner of Back Street and Winch Road, which were first outlined in the autumn of 2015.

That scheme was opposed by the county council's own flood risk unit because of concerns over drainage of the land, while residents living nearby also voiced objections on transport grounds.

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