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Travellers site vote

PUBLISHED: 14:21 07 May 2008 | UPDATED: 10:19 07 July 2010

Controversial plans to build a short-stay travellers' site in Fakenham have come another step closer - but councillors have reiterated their opposition to building permanent pitches.

Controversial plans to build a short-stay travellers' site in Fakenham have come another step closer - but councillors have reiterated their opposition to building permanent pitches.

North Norfolk District Council cabinet voted on Tuesday to accept two proposed temporary sites at Fakenham and Cromer.

But at the same time it voted to strongly oppose a regional strategy to create 15 permanent residential pitches in the district.

Though a final a decision on the two issues will be taken by full council, the vote paves the way for planning applications for the two temporary sites to be submitted later this month.

The site off the Fakenham bypass will cost £844,000 and the Cromer site, near the council offices and proposed police station on Holt Road, will cost £545,000. The higher cost of the Fakenham site is because of extra work needed to alter the road.

The government will fund the costs of building with running costs paid by the council's environmental health budget.

Both sites have met with strong local opposition. A parish poll in Fakenham rejected the idea and many in Cromer agreed in principle that a temporary travellers' site was needed but said the chosen site was wrong.

Opponents of the schemes have pledged to continue their opposition.

As cabinet members agreed to the two temporary sites they voted to repeat their clear message to the East of England Regional Assembly that its strategy of forcing each district in the region to have 15 full-time residential pitches was unacceptable.

The unelected regional body announced the proposals late last year and they are due to be scrutinised by inspectors in the coming months.

The district council has already said there is no proven need for long-term provision in north Norfolk.

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