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Inquiry to decide on Birch’s Park Homes’ bid to allow people to live in caravans permanently at Swaffham’s Breckland Meadows Touring Park

A mobile home firm’s legal tussle with a council is set for a public showdown when an inquiry is held next month.

Birch’s Park Homes is fighting Breckland Council’s decision to block its bid to allow people to live in caravans permanently at Breckland Meadows Touring Park in Swaffham.

It hoped to change the certificate of lawfulness – which determines how land can be used – to allow for 54 touring caravans and two static caravans to be lived in indefinitely, rather than just for holidays.

Breckland Meadows Touring Park. Picture: Google Maps
Breckland Meadows Touring Park. Picture: Google Maps

But Breckland Council planners decided to refuse the application last year, ruling that this could have a detrimental effect due to increased traffic and demand on public services like libraries and schools.

It also concluded that a touring caravan park is for recreational use and not to be lived in permanently.

The authority cited a legal case involving ex-US president Donald Trump and his Scottish golf course to show legal precedence for its decision.

However, Birch’s Park Homes is attempting to overturn this and disagrees with the council’s view.

In a statement, agent Laister has said Breckland Council’s decision is “contrary to common sense” and claims it is “misconceived” to say touring caravans cannot be lived in permanently.

It goes on to describe the authority’s reason for refusal as “erroneous” and it has said it will make Breckland Council pay for the costs of the hearing due to what it describes as “unreasonable behaviour” by the council which has resulted in this appeal.

A public hearing running for two days is scheduled for April 3, where a Planning Inspector – government officials that preside over planning appeals – will conduct the inquiry.

It will be held from 10am in the Anglia Room at Elizabeth House in Walpole Loke, Dereham.

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