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Controversial Drayton church plan gets green light

The entrance to the old David Rice hospital site.

The entrance to the old David Rice hospital site.

A plan to transform the former David Rice Hospital site in Drayton into a church has been given the go-ahead, despite concerns from families living nearby.

Broadland District Council’s planning committee had previously given outline approval to the scheme to build the church, which is backed by millionaire Christian businessman Graham Dacre, off Drayton High Road.

But the Lind Trust needed to get approval for what are known as reserved matters - which related to the appearance, landscaping, layout and scale of the church.

A previous effort to get those details approved had been turned down by members of the planning committee following concerns about the scale of the venture and issues such as traffic congestion.

More than 50 letters of objection were sent to the council raising concerns about the scheme, ranging from the number of parking spaces, traffic, the impact on local wildlife and the appearance of the 7.2m high, 2,020sq m building.

But planning officers had recommended the new set of detailed proposals, which were scaled back following widespread public opposition, were agreed.

And members of the planning committee agreed to delegate authority to the head of development management and conservation to grant permission.

For the full story read tomorrow’s Evening News.

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