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MP calls for answers over Queen's Hill development at Costessey

PUBLISHED: 15:00 28 November 2011

Richard Bacon MP

Richard Bacon MP

ARCHANT NORFOLK PHOTOGRAPHIC © 2010

A Norfolk MP has written to the administrators of a defunct development company to demand answers over the hold-ups preventing vital improvements to a development on the outskirts of Norwich.

Richard Bacon, South Norfolk MP, has intervened after it emerged a deal to deliver long-awaited infrastructure and community facilities to the Queen’s Hill development at Costessey which had been brokered between administrators Deloitte, who took over from Cofton in 2009, the house builders on the estate and South Norfolk Council looked to have hit a problem.

Mr Bacon, who was informed of the situation by South Norfolk Council, said: “I am very disappointed that yet another attempt to break the deadlock on Queen’s Hills is on the brink of failure.

“A lot has been going on behind the scenes. Most recently, the house builders on Queen’s Hills asked South Norfolk Council to release them from some of their legal obligations.”

Mr Bacon said the council was prepared to accept this on the basis that the developers provided an agreed £675,000 for the long awaited community centre by the end of September, but that legal wrangles involving Deloitte, as administrator of one of the parties, together with about 12 others had appeared to have “stymied the deal”.

He added: “It is time for action and I want to hear from Deloitte how they are going to end this deadlock once and for all”.

But John Fuller, leader of South Norfolk Council, said there had been a great deal of work going on behind the scenes with Deloitte who he described as “the route to the solution rather than the obstacle”.

He added: “Deloitte have been left holding the baby trying to corral a series of builders. We’ve been working behind the scenes, it’s a very complicated situation.

“The council is resolved to get the situation sorted and is hoping it can be done amicably which is in the parish’s best interests and also the benefits of residents who are either on site or who have bought premises in the area.”

Mr Fuller said he could understand the frustration of people living in the area about the “apparent lack of progress” he added the council had been working discretely behind the scenes to move the situation forward.

He said: “In the past week we’ve really brought Deloitte to the table. Deloitte have held the ring but now they are the key to securing a deal rather than the obstacle threatening a deal.”

Deloitte were contacted but no-one was available for comment.

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