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Big turnout likely at growth meeting

PUBLISHED: 09:46 17 September 2008 | UPDATED: 10:40 12 July 2010

A big turnout is likely on Friday at an open meeting at Attleborough at which people can hear about controversial proposals for the future growth of their town.

A big turnout is likely on Friday at an open meeting at Attleborough at which people can hear about controversial proposals for the future growth of their town.

The community has been earmarked for 4,000 new homes over the next 18 years as part of overall development in Breckland district, but the prospect of such large-scale expansion worries many residents.

About 380 people attended a recent meeting hosted by mayor Vera Dale, at which they were told that the scheme would change the face of Attleborough completely.

Concerns were raised that green-belt land would constitute the bulk of sites used for development and that already-stretched services in the area would have trouble coping.

Linda Aspland, who lives at nearby Besthorpe, is among those who have written to Breckland Council to voice their fears.

She said: “Attleborough is short of amenity space, entertainment oppor-tunities, cemetery capacity etc now. How can it expand until all this is put right for the existing population?

“I am horrified that land at Besthorpe is being considered for the expansion. This is a beautiful rural setting with some of the best houses and buildings in the area. It is used as a leisure area by lots of Attleborough residents for walking, riding, fishing shooting and motocross.”

Ms Aspland said her area also had rich farmland, and she feared that the volume of extra homes proposed would worsen flooding problems.

However, Breckland Council stressed that the location of the town's new houses and accom-panying services such as schools, public transport and green spaces were all up for discussion, and officers were keen to hear people's views on what new facilities they thought would be needed.

With traffic a hot topic in the

town, too, possible ways of

curbing congestion would be discussed too.

Ann Steward, pictured, Breckland's executive member for planning and environment, said Attleborough had a golden opportunity to capitalise on its strengths.

She added: “We hope that people will see this as a chance to hear the facts about the proposals and address any concerns that they may have.”

The meeting starts at 7pm at the Connaught Hall; doors opening at 6.30pm.

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