Gorleston’s second chance to voice opinion on homes plan

GORLESTON is to get a second chance to voice its opinion over a fresh bid to add 100 homes to its industrial riverside.

People had the opportunity to have their say and see the plans for themselves yesterday at a consultation meeting, organised by developers Terry Hall and Wellington Construction at the Halls Group site in Riverside Road where the houses are planned.

The scheme involves a mix of homes and businesses retaining a retail frontage on the site – previously part of a controversial 319 home Docklands-style development that won permission but was called in by the Secretary of State and ultimately withdrawn by the developers.

Margaret Ward, chairman of community group Start (St Andrews Riverside Triangle Group), which is hosting a second meeting on Monday, said she was asking people to think differently about the development.

“We want people to think about it from a different angle,” she said. “How would people feel about living near a 24 hour port where the activities are increasing every day – you can feel it happening. People need to think about that, it has to be seen in context. The question is not what it is but where it is.

“I suspect that people who are against it as housing might not have gone to the consultation because they are already a step further back from talking about where the houses should be and what they should look like. We also thought we might have a questionnaire.”

Under the plans, Halls will retain a presence on the large site which includes a range of other businesses which would relocate.

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Developers say the area has poor access for lorries and that switching to residential would boost the high street.

Critics, however, say industrial land is at a premium and would be impossible to reclaim, restricting any future job growth and possibly affecting the prosperity of the outer harbour when the economy picks up.

The meeting is on Monday at the St John Ambulance Rooms in Baker Street from 7-9pm.

Anyone who lives, works or has an interest in Gorleston is welcome. Call 01493 669845 for more information, or just turn up.