Decision day on Norwich park’s new boat lake access

Model boating enthusiasts will learn next week if their plans for a purpose-built entrance to a city park are to get the green light.

For more than 15 years members of the Norwich Model Boat Club have called for better access to the boating lake at Eaton Park because many of its members are elderly and they struggle to get their boats to the pond.

Currently club members with disabled parking permits are allowed to apply for a pass and drive through the park to the pond from the community centre. But the completion of the skatepark means they have to drive through an area with larger numbers of people and a separate access could help tackle the problem.

Members of Norwich City Council's planning committee are to consider a proposal for a new access at a meeting on Thursday. Officers are recommending the scheme which would enable access from South Park Avenue should be approved, but access should be restricted to a drop off point only because of fears it could cause traffic problems.

But a report by planning officer Lee Cook also raised concerns about the design of the gate which he was was 'untraditional in appearance' and not 'appropriate for a 1930s municipal park'.

'The boat club was given advice to choose an estate railing or filed gate which would complement the existing hedge and park setting; however the proposed gate bears no resemblance to such gates and appears modern and utilitarian in design and more appropriate for an ordinary car park entrance,' he said. 'The introduction of a more appropriately designed gate could actually enhance the park to some extent with an interesting design.'