East Norwich development on Colman site in spotlight

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Published:
3:00 p.m. July 2, 2022



Developers and council bosses will this week try to convince planning inspectors that a plan to build thousands of homes on the outskirts of Norwich is feasible.

The East Norwich Master Plan is a master plan for the development of former industrial sites in Carrow and Trowse.

It covers four main sites – Carrow Works, home of the former Colman’s and Britvic factories; the Deal Ground and May Gurney sites and the Utilities site.


The Carrow Works website. Photo: Fuel properties.
– Credit: Fuel properties

Plans for 1,856 homes on the Carrow Works site are due to be lodged with Norwich City Council by developers Fuel this month.

Serruys Property has clearance for nearly 700 homes on the Deal Ground and May Gurney sites, while the Utilities site, owned by National Grid and RWE Generation UK, is believed to have a potential of 684 homes.

But the area is also a key part of a master plan where nearly 50,000 homes could be built in and around Norwich by 2038.

This document – ​​the Greater Norwich Local Plan – is being reviewed by inspectors, who will recommend to Secretary of State Michael Gove whether it should be approved.


Communities Secretary Michael Gove delivers his keynote speech at the Conservative Party Conference

Secretary of State Michael Gove
– Credit: PA

Some 5,000 houses have already been built there and locations of around 74 sf identified, but the plan must allocate locations for the rest.

Councils in Norwich, South Norfolk and Broadland would then use it to help determine whether future planning applications should be allowed or not.

The East Norwich development is intended to provide 3,362 of the remaining homes.

But inspectors want to establish if these homes are viable and if they will be delivered by 2038.

A special hearing is scheduled for Wednesday July 6 at which developers, council officers and other interested parties will be questioned about the East Norwich projects.

Officers from the Greater Norwich Development Partnership will seek to persuade inspectors that the projects are viable and that phased construction would allow homes to be built on time.


A view of the river from the Deal Ground site

A view of the river from the Deal Ground site
– Credit: Norwich City Council

Fuel Properties and Serruys Properties, together with Hopkins Homes, as well as National Grid and RWE Generation UK have also made offers of support.

However, Historic England says the number of houses should be further reduced, to create a buffer zone protecting listed buildings such as Carrow Abbey and Carrow House.

And agents for other developers say the board’s projected delivery rates are “grossly overly optimistic”.

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