Council leaders pledge to push for action at derelict sites in Norwich

City council leaders have pledged to keep pushing for action at eyesore derelict sites in Norwich after meeting government officials at Westminster this week.

Norwich City Council leader Brenda Arthur and city councillors Bert Bremner and Ralph Gayton met officials from the Department for Communities and Local Government in London to see if local councils could be given more powers to force owners of derelict sites to take action.

No definite decisions were made at the meeting, but afterwards Mr Bremner said that they would continue to push to bring eyesore sites including pubs back into use.

He said: 'We did not expect big things from the meeting, but it was a chance to open up a dialogue, and tell them about the specific problems we have with derelict sites in Norwich.

'We were pleased to show them that residents want something to happen at these sites to boost the local economy.

'It's not just pub sites but places like St Anne's Wharf, off King Street, which is derelict.

We will continue to keep pushing this and the next step is to talk to the individual owners of the sites calling on them to come and do something about it.'

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The meeting was sparked after concerns were raised over the King's Arms pub in Mile Cross Road, which has been empty since 2000.

Neighbours have complained that rats from the site have invaded their properties and pose a risk to their children.

Deborah Hudson, who lives opposite the site, said: 'It's been an eyesore for more than 10 years. I think the people who own it have a responsibility to put it right for the community.'

Other privately owned buildings and building sites around the city which have been left in a derelict state include former pub sites such as The Grove in Cadge Road, Earlham and the site of the former Earl of Leicester on Dereham Road.

Have you been trying to get action taken on an eyesore site near you? Call Evening News reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email