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Council ponders levy spending for West Norfolk communities

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An outdoor gym, new bus shelters and improvements to local cricket clubs could all be given the green-light next month by West Norfolk Council.

Some £356,000 could be given to projects across the borough through the Community Infrastructure Levy – a charge placed on housing developers by local authorities to support community projects.

That funding would be matched with just over a million pounds from funding sources, such as the county council, or charitable organisations.

West Norfolk Council is set to consider plans to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds in planning levies over the coming weeks.
West Norfolk Council is set to consider plans to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds in planning levies over the coming weeks.

Among the items recommended for approval by council officers are new bus shelters in Nordelph and Emneth.

In Nordelph, a new shelter would go up on Silt Road to protect school children from the weather, in what a council report describes as a “very exposed rural area”.

In Emneth, a modern shelter could replace a “very old and dilapidated” existing shelter, which serves “a large proportion of the Emneth/Elm community travelling into and back from Wisbech town centre”.

Hunstanton Community Centre (48775985)
Hunstanton Community Centre (48775985)

New outdoor exercise equipment for adults and teens could meanwhile go up on the grounds of Hunstanton Community Centre, on the town’s Avenue Road.

In a supporting statement, Hunstanton Town Council (HTC) said: “In a perfect world, everyone would be able to afford to go to a gym, outdoor exercise equipment makes this possible, allowing an equal opportunity for all to get in shape.”

It pointed out that exercise improves mental health, and that the outdoor gym could help older adults to socialise.

HTC said the equipment would also draw people into the town, which would be “great for Hunstanton’s economy”.

Improvements at Hockwold and Grimston cricket clubs have also been recommended for approval by officers.

At Hockwold, the project would cover the cost of a secure scoreboard, a new scorebox for the scorers to spectate from, and a water collector – the latter of which would consist of a foam drum on wheels which would absorb water from the cricket square.

Meanwhile, at Grimston, funding would allow the club to complete a programme of works including a re-roofing, a new kitchen, new flooring, new toilet/washing facilities and double-glazed windows.

The next stage will be for councillors on the CIL spending panel task group, having received the advice of officers, to make their own recommendations about which projects should go forward, which is due to take place on February 14.

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