The Development

On May 17th, 2018, councillors on North Norfolk District Council’s development committee passed Victory Housing’s application for the development on the central Millennium Field by eight votes to four.

The application was passed with the conditions that Victory uses more flint, rather than red brick, so the homes are more in keeping with the village, and that a boundary hedge and memorial trees planted in memory of loved ones about 20 years ago are kept on the site.

The Players

The land was sold by North Norfolk District Council to Victory Housing Trust.

Victory have contracted Wellington Construction to build the site.

The Site
Millenium Field Development Plans
The Plan
Wellington's revised Traffic Management Plan
The Progress

The plans are not in keeping with the council’s highways and affordable housing development guidelines.   Residents and some councillors said fire engines and ambulances would have trouble accessing the site and the Highways Authority objected to the plans, although Norfolk Fire and Rescue did not.

Assurances were given that School Lane would not be used as the delivery route for heavy delivery lorries, artics etc. given the already difficult access issues.   An entrance to the site was then gated and used on the Knapton Road which caused serious traffic concerns on what is a much busier road.   presentation’s were made by a local resident and the entrance was closed, effectively bringing the site to a standstill.

Council members met with Bob Dowler, the site manager and then Paul Pitcher, the MD of Wellington, on site to discuss the impasse.   Mr Pitcher put forward a revised Traffic Management Plan which took into account all the issues raised by our concerned residents and the Parish Council called a Public Meeting so that local residents could view it and discuss it directly with Mr Pitcher.

Mr Pitcher’s professional and sympathetic approach at the meeting left our residents feeling positive and confident in the suggested changes and acceptance of the plan was approved by the Parish Council.   The site is now open and the full effects of that revised plan are now in effect.

Archaeological Survey

As part of the pre-build process, Victory Housing commissioned Suffolk Archaeology to carry out an archaeological dig to ensure that they weren’t desecrating a site of historical significance.   Their report, published on the NNDC planning portal, covered an initial dig of seven trenches in May and June 2018 and uncovered archaeological features on site thought to be potentially significant, including a late Saxon to high medieval settlement.

The site lies within an area of archaeological and historical interest and has the potential to reveal evidence of a range of periods. Prehistoric activity includes flint scatters recovered during metal detectorist surveys and crop-marks identified from aerial photography.

And the report’s conclusion stated:

Archaeological remains across the eastern half of the site, within the area of trenches two to six define a truncated late Saxon and early medieval settlement phase with evidence of pits, postholes and ditches.

A spokeswoman from Flagship Group, which owns Victory Housing, said that the first dig informed the scoping report by Suffolk Archaeology which was approved by Norfolk County Council and highlighted the areas of interest for the full, second dig.
These works were undertaken by Archaeological Solutions, and were completed in mid-March.

Click below to download the Survey Report

Naming Our New Road
Henry Wild

On 3rd of June 2019 the Parish Council was approached by the Street Naming and Numbering Team at North Norfolk District Council regarding their case number:  SNN case NP/19/0135 – School Close, Knapton, asking for suggestions for the name of the new road on the Millenium development.

The council asked residents for their thoughts and a resident in School Close suggested Wilds Way, after a long term resident, Henry Wild, as shown below.

Dear Sir/Madam,
I would like to put my suggestion forward to the proposed road name to the new development of School Close, Knapton.
Being a local man myself, I would like to see it named Wilds Way, this is after Henry Wild who was a Knapton resident all his life. He was born, lived all his life and died in the same cottage next to the village hall and with this in mind would have looked across that field for 93 years were the construction is currently being carried out.
I feel it would be a fitting tribute to his memory as he done a lot for this parish of Knapton.
Kind Regards
Wayne Myhill

The Parish Council agreed with Mr & Mrs Myhill’s suggestion and advised the Street Naming and Numbering Team that this was their preferred choice.   As a result, this name was formerly adopted by NNDC and the property addresses confirmed on 31st July 2019 as being 1-17 Wilds Way.

Village Hall Car Park

As part of the new housing development Victory Housing kindly agreed to replace the old car park with a new lockable one.   This has now been completed and officially handed over to the Parish Council under a long term licence agreement which was signed by the Chairman and Vice-Chairman, to monitor and manage it’s usage for the short-term parking of vehicles by visitors to Knapton and users of the Village Hall.

Whilst able to be locked at any time without notice and at the sole discretion of the Parish Council, it is hoped that the car park will remain free and permanently open for its intended use.   However should it be abused, the council can arrange for any offending vehicles to be towed away with all associated costs for recovery being solely the responsibility of the vehicle owner.

In accordance with the agreement, the council has ordered two signs to be located at the entrance and the rear of the car park which make the terms of its use very clear and once they are in place the car park will be unlocked.   This is expected to happen by the end of January.

Car Park Picture Gallery

The new Village Hall car park is finished to a high standard and provides safe parking for;

  • several secure racks for motor bikes and cycles
  • 9 car parking spaces for general use
  • 1 disabled car parking space
Housing Development Picture Gallery

Construction has been swift as Victory strive for completion by Summer 2020.
The building of 14 new homes has been generally well managed by Victory, who have shown a willingness to consult with the Parish Council to resolve any issues and concerns and have made great efforts to maintain a positive relationship with the residents of School Close.

School Close Footpath Picture Gallery

Victory also built a new footpath leading from School Close running alongside Hall Lane as far as the car park entrance, almost opposite the road leading to the rear entrance of the Village Hall.
This should go a long way to improving the safety of residents making their way to the Village Hall from the School Close side of Hall Lane and School Close itself.