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Cranswick Objection Group start raising fund to cover legal costs to stop chicken and pig farms coming to Methwold and Feltwell

Campaigners fighting against plans to create two mega-farms in neighbouring Norfolk villages are raising funds in preparation for future legal costs.

The Cranswick Objection Group has already reached more than half its target of £10,000 as it seeks to stop the bid for large chicken and pig farms in West Norfolk – which could be one of the biggest in Europe.

It comes as Cranswick hopes to create two sites housing 14,000 pigs and 870,000 chickens in Methwold and Feltwell, which it says will be modern farms producing affordable food to high animal welfare standards.

Cranswick hopes to knock down the disused sheds and build 14 pig buildings at the site in Methwold. CREDIT: Owen Sennitt
Cranswick hopes to knock down the disused sheds and build 14 pig buildings at the site in Methwold. CREDIT: Owen Sennitt

However, there is growing opposition in the surrounding communities and from animal rights groups ahead of a decision.

The group, started by neighbours Shirley De’Ath and Denise Charlesworth, say they need the cash to pay for legal representation when the applications come before the West Norfolk Council planning committee.

They worry the farms will lead to a huge increase in traffic, pollution risks and smells.

In a statement, the pair said: “We know we have a big fight on our hands, and we are trying to prepare for this.

“If the application is accepted, this would cause a huge detrimental impact on our daily lives.

“We understand that we need legal representation and this comes at a cost.”

Cranswick’s farm plans have become one of the most contentious planning applications in the region in recent years.

Opposition is mounting, with thousands of letters of objection flooding West Norfolk Council’s website from people across the country following a call to action from Peta, the animal rights charity.

The CEO of Vegetarian food giant Quorn, which has a factory located next door to the proposed Methwold site, has also publicly opposed the plans.

Currently the fundraiser – held on Crowdjustice, an online petition site that aims to raise donations to support legal costs – has generated £5,750 towards potential fees.

It is currently unknown when the applications will come before councillors, with the application facing delay after delay.

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