Officials play down flood risk, as committee urges King’s Lynn homes plan rethink

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Land at the centre of a controversial housing scheme is at no greater risk of flooding than any other part of Lynn, a meeting has heard.

The comment was made as a West Norfolk Council committee examined plans for part of the Lynnsport and Marsh Lane project last night.

But members urged the authority to look again at plans for some properties to be built above garages for nearby homes, which were branded as “weird.”

The meeting of the Lynn area consultative committee considered plans for 54 homes, associated access roads and new open space on a site to the north of Lynnsport, known as Lynnsport 3.

But principal planner Stuart Ashworth said the scheme was still a long way from being referred to the planning committee for a decision.

He said county roads officials had asked for around 20 changes to the layout of the site.

And North Lynn representative Sandra Buck echoed the concerns of objectors about what they perceive as the increased flood risk created by the scheme.

But Thomas Smith, whose ward includes much of the area covered by the project, said documents which were presented at a consultation event for another part of the scheme last week showed why the risk should not prevent development.

He said: “In the event this site was flooded, all of us would need wellies to walk round out wards, because the whole town would be flooded.

“It’s not specifically at risk. It’s exactly the same level as the rest of the town.”

However, committee members were far more critical of plans to site some homes above garages belonging to other properties.

Conservative Patrick Rochford said he had “serious concerns” about the design, which he feared could lead to future disputes between residents.

Fellow Tory Graham Middleton said he had seen a similar approach on the King’s Reach development, although Labour’s Sandra Collop said that was a parking area rather than separate garages.

John Collop added: “Why build a garage if you’re going to do that? I think it’s a very poor design.”

And committee chairman Andy Tyler said: “It seems weird.”

The committee also backed Mr Smith’s suggestion that a condition should be imposed on any subsequent permission, preventing building work from starting until an equivalent amount of open space was made available nearby.

Some members questioned the extent to which existing green spaces were used by residents with one, Lesley Bambridge, pointing out there was no-one shown in a picture of one area of grassland.

But Charles Joyce said: “We shouldn’t be willing to sacrifice a green lung of the town.

“Sure, there wasn’t anyone there in the picture but you go to the Walks on a frosty morning and you won’t find many there. Do we really want to build on the Walks?”