Officials back plan for dozens of new homes in Necton

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Proposals to demolish a historic farmhouse to make way for dozens of new homes in Necton will be debated by councillors next week.

Officials have recommended that the plan for the Erne Farm site on North Pickenham Road is given the go-ahead by Breckland Council’s planning committee on Monday.

But opponents say the farmhouse should be saved and have voiced concerns over wider traffic issues.

Heritage Developments Ltd are seeking outline permission for 46 homes following the demolition of the existing disused farmhouse, plus a bungalow and outbuildings on the site.

The scheme also includes the provision of a new community park.

The district has been deemed to have a shortfall of suitable housing land and the applicant says that means the scheme should be approved.

Documents submitted to the council said: “The council should be seeking to approve developments which comply with up to date policies without delay.

“The proposed scheme is considered to comply with all of the relevant planning policies and there are no material considerations which would indicate that the proposal should be refused.”

The application has been supported by the village’s parish council, who said they did not want to become Necton’s “second diner.”

But the council has asked to take part in discussions between the applicant and county roads officials on the issue of road access.

Members of the public have also raised concerns about what they see as the “poor access into and out of Necton onto the A47” and potential flood risks elsewhere in the village as a result of the development.

Letters to the council have also argued that the farmhouse “should not be demolished as it is a historic building.”

But planning officers said: “Whilst the loss of the historic farmhouse and barn is regrettable when taken as part of the wider planning balancing exercise, it is considered appropriate to recommend approval in this instance.”

The committee report also outlines a requirement on the developer for a 15 per cent affordable housing contribution, equating to seven of the proposed homes.

Financial contributions towards library and education provision are also sought as part of the development.