Dog care business looking to move into vacant farm building

The scheme will allow UEA students to walk dogs on the university campus in Norwich. Picture: UEA

Tom and Toto Doggy Day Care is looking to move into White House Farm in Sprowston - Credit: UEA

Plans have been put forward which could see a doggy day centre created at an existing community hub on the outskirts of Norwich. 

Oliver and Charlotte Gurney, owners of White House Farm in Salhouse Road, Sprowston, have asked for planning permission to let out a currently vacant building. 

Tom and Toto Pet Care, located in Stoke Holy Cross, is the potential tenant under the plans submitted to Broadland District Council. 

The existing dog day-care business, which began in May 2013, is currently in operation with 10 people, but is without a fixed premise of its own. 

White House Farm in Sprowston 

White House Farm in Sprowston - Credit: Google Maps

It offers a place for dog owners to let their pets socialise and play with other four-legged friends under the watch of an experienced team.

A statement from the Gurneys on the Broadland planning portal said the owner of Tom and Toto Pet Care has been looking for the right site for two years.

It adds: "The 'puppy boom' is keenly felt and they are looking capitalise on this.

"By taking on their first brick premises, they would not only be showing commitment to their existing 10 staff, but will be creating a minimum of four more jobs at White House Farm.

"Her clients would then use White House Farm daily, helping steer additional footfall to the farm and existing businesses, therefore making our existing site more sustainable." 

Dogs will be on extra long leads so students taking part in the UEA dog-walking scheme will be able

There are plans for a new doggy day care centre in Sprowston - Credit: UEA

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White House Farm has expanded over the last seven years from a traditional 'pick your own' fruit farm.

A planning statement from the owner of Tom and Toto said noise levels should be low and have "no significant impact on neighbouring businesses". 

It says dogs would not be left to bark freely and would be supervised at all times.

There would be four dedicated parking spaces for staff to use to the side of the building.

And Tom and Toto said there would be a maximum of 30 day care customers with the centre being able to run a customer flow of one vehicle every five minutes.

It comes as a change of use application from retail to a dance studio was recently granted for an outbuilding at White House Farm in February 2020.