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Leziate plan 'can reduce anti-social behaviour', developers claim

Plans to build new homes and a new headquarters for a club previously wrecked by fire will help to reduce anti-social behaviour in the area, developers have claimed.

The outline proposals, which go before borough councillors next week, are intended to enable a watersports club to be reformed in Leziate.

But county transport chiefs say the scheme will not encourage future residents to use sustainable travel options.

The scene of the fire at Leziate (18308660)
The scene of the fire at Leziate (18308660)

Seven homes are proposed for the site of the old Leziate Lake Country Club at Brow of the Hill, plus a new club headquarters.

The previous club closed in 2016 and its buildings were largely destroyed by fire in July last year. Much of the old structure has since been removed for health and safety reasons.

Documents submitted to West Norfolk Council in support of the application described the scheme as “modest” and argued that a permanent use of the site would help to reduce disorder problems in the area.

A summary of the applicants’ case contained in officers’ report to the authority’s planning committee, said: “The site will become a useable, safe and attractive site and facility for the residents of Leziate and surrounding areas, and residents of the proposed dwellings; whilst also providing a permanent presence on site to defer anti-social behaviour.”

Borough council planning officials have recommended that the scheme is approved when it is debated by councillors on Monday, subject to legal agreements being completed by early February.

But Norfolk County Council highways officials have objected, claiming it breaches national policy guidelines.

They said: “The proposal is remote from local service centre provision conflicting with the aims of transport sustainable development, the need to minimise travel, the ability to encourage walking, cycling, use of public transport and reduce the reliance on the private car.”

The Open Spaces Society is also opposed to the development, because of what it sees as the unacceptable impact on visitors to the area.

They said: “The proposed construction of a residential development here would detrimentally alter public path users’ perception and enjoyment of the countryside.”

But parish councillors have raised no objection following a meeting on the issue, despite acknowledging that allowing development outside the existing settlement boundary might set a precedent.

They said: “The limited number of local residents that were present held the view they would prefer the development because the burnt out site is an eyesore and has become a site for anti-social behaviour with the police often called to the site.”

Borough planners said the scheme would bring “significant” benefits if it is given the go-ahead.

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