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Heacham and Hunstanton residents vote yes to using Neighbourhood Plan to help decide planning applications



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Residents of both Hunstanton and Heacham voted on Thursday in favour of using the Neighbourhood Plan to help decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area.

In the Heacham Neighbourhood Planning Referendum held, votes cast in favour of a Yes were 83.3 per cent while the turnout was 23pc.

Hunstanton votes cast in favour of a Yes were 79.8 per cent; turnout was 19.8pc.

Heacham Village Sign. Photo: Mark Oakden
Heacham Village Sign. Photo: Mark Oakden

Neighbourhood plans, which outline how and where new housing developments can be built, had been prepared in Hunstanton and Heacham, and need to win the approval of a majority of local people.

The documents are important when the borough council comes to decide on planning applications, since they demonstrate how local people want their areas to grow.

As previously reported in the Lynn News, Heacham’s document describes the village as “one of the largest villages in the region, with a population of around 4,649, and around 2,763 dwellings.”

The working group of councillors and local people who drew up Heacham’s plan also conducted a questionnaire among residents.

The plan states: “Many are concerned that the infrastructure is not keeping pace with development."

Hunstanton’s plan notes that local residents are “anxious” not only to protect the area’s natural environment, but also the town’s separation from Heacham to the south and Old Hunstanton to the northeast.

Three large developments have been approved in the town in recent years, including 166 homes on land to the south of the town; 120 homes to the east of the A149; and a mixed development to the south of the industrial estate, also east of the A149.

After receiving residents’ approval, both plans will be valid until 2036.



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