2:56 PM March 7, 2022
A council leader said he hoped the sale of hundreds of acres of land on the outskirts of Norwich would kick off a major development of 3,500 homes – and not be another ‘false dawn’.
Members of Norfolk County Council’s Tory-controlled cabinet have agreed to sell some 90 acres of land near the Sprowston Park and Ride site to a mystery bidder.
The council was the latest in a group of landowners who are ready to sell 400 acres of land in Sprowston and Old Catton to a single buyer.
Organizations such as Beeston Estate, Morley Agricultural Foundation and Alderman Norman Foundation are among other landowners.
The sale could mean work on a development of 3,500 homes, most between North Walsham Road and Wroxham Road, finally begins almost a decade after planning permission was obtained.
Broadland District Council gave Beyond Green permission in 2013 – but work on the houses has yet to start.
Two years ago, the developers of the development – TOWN and London-based U&I – offered to sell the site to a single buyer, but that fell through.
However, a new buyer made an offer which was accepted by the main landowners – and the county council also agreed to sell its share.
Details of the proposed sale, including the identity of the buyer and how much the council would earn, are not disclosed, with the council citing commercial sensitivity.
Greg Peck, a member of the council’s office for business services and asset management, said the information would be released by the land registry after the deal is completed.
He added: “Property disposals will provide capital inflows to the council to support the capital program and therefore service delivery.
“The county council will apply capital revenue to meet its priorities.”
Andrew Proctor, Leader of Norfolk County Council, said: “Good to see this moving forward so we can finally get development started on this site.
“We’ve had false auroras before, but hopefully it won’t work out that way.”
The prospect of thousands more homes has raised concerns about the impact on infrastructure.