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King’s Lynn's Florence Fields development delayed as broken drains and stormy weather leaves site swamped by water

A major housing development being built in a flood risk zone has been hit by delays after broken drains and stormy weather left the site swamped by water.

A report to West Norfolk Council describes the situation at Florence Fields – a 226-home scheme being built in Lynn – as “difficult”.

Following Storm Babet’s heavy rainfall last month, the site is facing “significant water management issues” and that work is under way to protect homes, roads and footpaths from water runoff.

Florence Fields will be built next to the Lynn Academy site on Queen Mary Road/Parkway, Gaywood
Florence Fields will be built next to the Lynn Academy site on Queen Mary Road/Parkway, Gaywood

A collapsed culvert under the railway line is thought to be blamed in part, which has caused reduced water flow and efforts are being made to pressure Network Rail to fix it.

Alistair Beales, cabinet member for business, said in the report: “The situation is difficult but manageable.

“The problem is greatly exacerbated by a collapsed culvert under the adjacent network rail line which is reducing water flow.

Cllr Alistair Beales
Cllr Alistair Beales

“Once resolved, the improved drainage will benefit all properties upstream and the water on the site itself can be discharged into the local drainage network allowing works to progress quickly.”

Work began on the council-backed development in September this year, which has been dogged by controversy due to rising costs which have risen to at least £54m.

The development was met with several objections from locals which included flooding fears, as the site is being built within a high-risk flood zone.

These concerns led to the Environment Agency to oppose the project but it was eventually approved providing measures were put in place to protect against flooding.

Developments being built in areas prone to flooding has been brought into the spotlight lately in other parts of Norfolk.

In Attleborough, a 350-home development being built on land known to regularly flood has prompted fears the construction site could have affected drainage in the area after 129 homes were swamped when Storm Babet brought torrential rain to the area.

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