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Officials accused of 'misleading' over Pott Row barn homes proposal

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Borough council officials have been accused of making "misleading" claims over proposals to knock down a barn and build two homes in its place.

The claim was made as West Norfolk Council's planning committee overwhelmingly approved proposals for the site in Vong Lane, Pott Row, on Thursday.

The meeting at Lynn town hall was told that a barn on the site had already been given what is known as class Q designation.

Planning Applications. (55125182)
Planning Applications. (55125182)

That gave prior approval for a change of use of the building into housing.

But former borough mayor Michael Pitcher, speaking of behalf of the Grimston parish council, argued that previous rights would be lost if the building was demolished.

He said the parish council had expressed concerns about the designation and accused officers of making a "grossly misleading" statement suggesting class Q status outweighed normal objections to development in open countryside.

Ward representative Colin Manning also called for the application to be deferred until the legal situation was clearer.

But officials insisted that case law endorsed their view and argued the applicant, F.K. Coe and Son, could still submit a new application even if the existing building was converted.

Katy Coe, for the company, had earlier described the new proposal as a "small amendment" which was needed to enable cost-effective construction.

Tony Bubb suggested the application should be refused on the grounds that it did not accord with the form and character of other buildings in the area.

But Sandra Squire said the applicants had tried to maintain the look of the site as an agricultural building.

She added: "I can't see a problem with it. It's not going to lead to more development."

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