Plan for visitor and community centre at Beck Row’s nature reserve

Elevations of the proposed Aspal Close LNR visitor centre ANL-151216-110444001
Elevations of the proposed Aspal Close LNR visitor centre ANL-151216-110444001
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Suffolk County Council is seeking planning permission for a visitor-cum-community centre at Beck Row’s Aspal Close Local Nature Reserve.

The county says it needs to turn into classrooms the accommodation in Beck Row School currently used as a community centre.

The location of the proposed centre is marked in red and the Homestead is outlined in green ANL-151216-110455001

The location of the proposed centre is marked in red and the Homestead is outlined in green ANL-151216-110455001

It says it looked at using the football pitch and Toc-H site for a new community centre, but the pitch is too far from the road and the Toc-H site is a children’s playground.

The planning application says to make up for using the 289sq m centre site on St John’s Street the county will give the reserve the 15,500sq m Homestead site it owns to the north of it.

The plan includes replacement tree planting to screen the centre and grass snakes and common lizards on the centre site will be relocated alsewhere in the reserve.

To preserve the area of Breckland grassland the reserve is known for, seed-rich topsoil from the centre site will be saved and used at Homestead.

The centre, which will also be used for educational purposes, will be of high energy efficency and will have solar panels.

You can view an comment on the plans at www.westsuffolk.gov.uk/planning where it is application number DC/15/2408/CR3.