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THEME 1 THE LOCAL ECONOMY 


4.2.1 Mini-Vision - The planned growth will be driven by new economic and employment investment to support a range of industry and services maximising current business innovation and transport links, including advanced engineering, research and development, food production and agriculture. New retail outlets and expanding education, health and social care will provide jobs and help establish the town as a predominately self-sustaining community.

Objective LE1
To support and develop allocation of land for new employment and to continue to review further requirements.

Policy LE. P1
The creation of a business park, for B1 and B2 uses, within the Area of Search identified on the Policies Map and shown as Site A on Figure 4, will be supported subject to it comprising a high-quality parkland environment in keeping with the local character; and providing space for small and medium sized enterprises.

figure 4


4.2.2 Background on employment in Attleborough and the potential to improve the jobs
to housing balance is set out in the Evidence Base. There has been concern that the local jobs available do not attract high skilled professional and technical workers, and especially with the proposed housing growth there will be accelerating out commuting activity with environmental and social consequences as well as leakage in spending from the local area. The aim of the policy is to even the balance of employment and housing as the town grows and be based on the precedents already set on the A11 corridor and on London Road. High-end small-scale manufacturing could be a possible use, or small enterprises seeking a relatively cheap site with good transport along the A11 to Norwich and Cambridge whilst benefitting from availability of homes for staff. In its proximity to the A11, the site is also meeting the Greater Norwich and LEP policy objectives for high tech business growth along the A11 corridor from Norwich to Cambridge. The Area of Search is the White Lodge Public House and Breckland Lodge hotel and restaurant and is easily accessible to and visible from the A11. Breckland Lodge is complemented by the surroundings on London Road that give a rural character that the site can seek to reflect. The part the site closest to it could offer flexible business/ leisure use spaces designed to respect this character. 


4.2.3 The development could be carried out in phases over the time period of the ANP, relating to demand. The Area of search is close to the proposed link road to the SUE housing, with the potential to access London Road from a junction connecting to the link road when this is completed. To minimise the impact of the development on the highway network, a full Transport Assessment (TA) would be required by the planning authority and Travel Plans will be required. Within the site a Car Parking Management
Plan will be required to support the developer’s proposals alongside an Access Management Plan.

4.2.4 The Town Council will seek to work with other parties with the aim of creating a development brief relating to the Area of Search. This may take into account the following:

  • Provide suitable space for regional business, R&D, commercial and light manufacturing development, no ‘high-eaves’ structures will be allowed
  • Encourage SMEs and business incubators to the development
  • Encourage development that presents an image of high quality and value, and is attractive and welcoming to users
  • Set minimum quality Standards for site design and building architecture.
  • Develop attractive building facades visible from public roads and paths.
  • Reduce the negative visual impact of parking with attractive and appropriately sized landscaping, particularly hedges
  • Encourage energy conservation in building design and materials through window locations to optimimise solar gain for offices, appropriate orientation if stores require cool spaces and other measures
  • Promote a sense of permanence and richness in the area by requiring the use of high quality materials specially to convey a suitable image to the gateway to the town, and the setting of the listed White Lodge PH on London Road. Aluminiumcladding would not be considered favourably, particularly on visible elevations, on the London Road frontages or in proximity to the listed White Lodge PH
  • Require exterior colours to be subtle yet rich colours rather than intense, bright colours
  • Provide for integrating lighting into building and site design. Lighting should be designed as an integral part of the building in a manner that enhances the facade, architectural features and the site design. Light fixtures should be compatible with the colours and materials of the building architecture, site furnishings and landscape of the project. Minimise light trespass into adjoining wildlife areas and the setting to the listed White House
  • Create a compatible landscape scheme within the site and on its boundaries that advances the continuity of the landscape. The landscaping buffers are most important – especially hedges to break the elevations as seen from outside the site. Integrate landscape and water management, enhance existing boundary planting with suitable native species, retain mature site trees wherever possible, and create shared staff amenity areas on the site
  • Screen storage areas, mechanical equipment and loading areas from public areas and from the roads to the extent that is practical
  • The use of thatching and other natural materials (e.g. limecrete and hemcrete) will be encouraged. The University of East Anglia Enterprise Centre can offer R&D advice on materials, and local companies (Norfolk and Suffolk) are able to deliver, so this will be a good driver for local business development
  • The eaves heights would be expected to lie in the range 6-8 metres maximum, and 10-13 metre height buildings would not be allowed 


Objective LE2
Investment in improving the town should meet policies to protect and support its heritage and attractiveness set out in the Environment Theme 7 below.

Objective LE3
Support the vitality and viability of Attleborough Town Centre as set out in the following policies.

Policy LE. P2
The redevelopment of the area including Queens Square Care Park, shown as Site B on Figure 6, for mixed use development including retail and community uses, will be supported, subject to the re-provision of car parking spaces.

4.2.5 Queen’s Square and the ‘back-land” behind it form an important town centre site and enhancement opportunity site, enabling the historic centre of Attleborough to grow its range of attractions as the town grows and to serve the hinterland villages. This proposed regeneration site is where the ANPSG or its successor organization would seek to create a 'Community Hub', which could include a relocated and expanded Library, Archives and Town Council Offices and Tourist Information Centre, and new public toilets. Co-locating these facilities will be efficient and could also meet the need (that young people requested during consultations) for a location where they could meet, with free wi-fi in the town centre. The Town Council will seek to work together with land owners to create a brief for development. Depending on the outcome of studies, there is a linked proposal for the Academy sports hall to be converted to a theatre with a new foyer with access from this car park site. More information about the proposal is given in the Sport, Leisure and Community Theme 6 below. 


4.2.6 This town centre site could also be the key retail improvement focus for Attleborough to meet policies for putting the town centre first and to retain its vibrancy and vitality. In a workshop of potential users, landowners and the ANPSG on 1 August 2016, these options were debated, and the potential for the site to offer town centre housing was also discussed. A follow up meeting with BC (as landowner of the car park part of the site) and ANPSG members, explored options for re-organising parking areas
that would contribute to the town’s vitality and identified potential sites providing additional and replacement public car parking on land to the north of the Academy.

4.2.7 The benefits and opportunities of the proposals for the site, constraints and viable delivery options will be more fully explored in a brief. This would be subject to the policies in this ANP and its content would be consulted on. The site brief will emerge during follow-up discussions, in which potential delivery can be explored, also involving BC, other parties affected such as the Academy and some of the retailers on Church Street with rear servicing access. However the discussions above indicate there is a strong degree of agreement in principle with key landowners.

4.2.8 The implementation timescale would need to consider timing of contributions to supply social infrastructure, and successful implementation of projects such as a new Academy Sports Hall.

4.2.9 Figure 5 ANP Town Centre Policies - Map 2 site B shows the boundary for this policy and the proposed area the brief should cover. It is the intension of the Town Council that the buildings and trees, shown within site B on Figure 5 will stay.

figure 5

Community Action: Town Centre Retail.
The Town Council will seek to encourage any shop owner seeking a change of use to provide the Attleborough and Snetterton Business Forum and Breckland Business Directory with information as early as possible, so they can advise members of an opportunity.

Policy LE. P3
Other uses that complement the town centre will be supported in a local centre in the SUE.

4.2.10 The SUE retail floor space should not compete with the Town Centre, but only provide for local requirements. The ANP therefore expects the town centre first policy of the NPPF to be respected and increased retail floor space to be focused within the existing town centre as it grows.

4.3 THEME 2 HOUSING

Mini-Vision
4.3.1 New housing of mixed tenure, type and incorporating sustainable design and construction to meet the growing needs of the community, as well as meeting the Core Strategy growth required, will be integrated into new and existing facilities.


Objective H1
Support new residential units as set out in the Breckland Core Strategy 2009, an allocation of land for 4,000 new residential units over the period 2016-2036, in the SUE growth area, and ensure the housing is integrated into Attleborough, by working closely with the promoters and BC to develop the designs, masterplan, infrastructure and
connections.

Objective H2
Provide a balanced housing mix to address the demographic changes and to address the needed housing across all tenures, including Housing with Care, as set out in Theme 5 Housing & Social Care below. The potential for self-build homes will be assessed and provision made.

4.3.2 The evidence collected in the consultant’s report for the Health and Social Care Theme Group on current provision is that less than 10% of the expected demand for housing with care can be accommodated within 5 miles of the centre of Attleborough. If older people were able to move into appropriate housing, with care and support available if required, the move would help ease the wider pressures on the housing market as many larger family homes would be made available for growing families to move into, in turn freeing up smaller properties for first time buyers. Sufficient support and care services are needed to meet both the current high demand and the projected increase. Health and Social Care policy HSC.P1 in the Health & Social Care theme 5 below is seeking to provide Housing with Care in a dual registered facility to meet this need. The feedback is that older residents will prefer to move to housing with care rather than a care home because it would give them their own front door and allow for greater independence, but with support. 


4.3.3 Home working is a trend that is likely to continue and we would welcome homes designed for this demand. The ability to build in flexibility, with a wall that is movable for example, would also help with adaptability to changing circumstances: so could help older residents who are downsizing but want to have a home that is adaptable as mobility needs change.

Objective H3
Promote good placemaking and modern design and use of existing and new sustainable building materials and methodology to reduce energy and resource use.

Community Action: Good Design.
The Town Council will seek to encourage developers to take Building for Life 12 into account when planning for new development. The Town Council will also see to encourage developers to take larger scale development proposals through independent design review.