Legal bid to reverse Heacham homes planning refusal fails

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Developers have failed in their latest attempt to secure planning permission for a controversial housing scheme in a West Norfolk village.

A government planning inspector rejected an appeal against councillors’ decision to block the proposed scheme in Heacham in the summer.

But it has now been revealed that a further legal challenge to the decision has also been rejected.

In a report published ahead of West Norfolk Council’s meeting later this week, development portfolio holder Richard Blunt said: “The appellants at the Heacham appeal had sought to challenge the decision in the courts, but that challenge was comprehensively lost at the first hurdle.”

Townsfolk and Broadland Housing had sought to build 70 homes, 60 sheltered housing units and a 60-bed care home on land off School Road.

They claimed the plan would provide urgently needed affordable accommodation for elderly people and should be approved because of the perceived lack of appropriate housing land.

But the council successfully argued that it had adequate land supplies to justify refusal of the plans, which it said would also cause significant visual and landscape harm if it was given the go-ahead.

A five-day public inquiry into the scheme was held in May and the decision released in July.