‘Loitering’ fear over car park plan in South Wootton housing bid

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A car park proposed within a new housing scheme in South Wootton could become “an area open for loitering” if plans are approved, community leaders have warned.

A total of 26 homes, plus a car park and open space, are proposed for the site on Nursery Lane.

Borough planning officials have recommended approval of the scheme, subject to the completion of legal agreements, when West Norfolk Council’s planning committee debates it in Lynn on Monday.

But parish councillors in neighbouring North Wootton have raised concerns about what they see as the potential safety implications of the plan.

Officers’ report to the committee highlighted their fears the scheme would increase traffic and possibly create a “dangerous hotspot” on an already busy road, plus worries about a potential lack of lighting on a public right of way that will be used as a footpath.

They also questioned the need for the car park, given that each home envisaged in the scheme is allocated two parking spaces.

They asked: “Will this become an area open for loitering in a similar way to that of Wootton Park car park?”

But applicants Hopkins and Moore (Developments) Ltd say the plans deal “sensitively” with the land’s constraints.

They said: “An opportunity has been taken to provide a scheme maximising the positive aspects of the sites situation whilst providing much needed additional housing, including affordable housing, for the village.”

South Wootton parish council has also backed the plan, which it says meets the requirements of its neighbourhood plan to improve open green spaces near development sites.

They said: “The parish council considers that the proposed development will meet the aims of this policy, delivering both new green public open space for the benefit of all residents, along with a good range of new homes, including affordable housing, and therefore supports the proposals.”

If permission is granted, the applicants will have until early July to complete legal agreements relating to the provision of affordable housing, open space and habitat mitigation.

Five of the homes proposed in the scheme are classed as affordable.