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Thetford hospital site in limbo after plan withdrawal




A Thetford planning application has been withdrawn this week after receiving strong opposition.

Plans sent to Breckland Council would have seen the closed Cottage Hospital, in Earls Street, which was sold in 2010, demolished and replaced with a three-storey block of 30 flats.

Thetfordians, the town council and Historic England voiced concerns including the design not fitting with the rest of the street, lack of visitor parking, not retaining elements of the building and traffic worries.

Thetford Cottage Hospital, on the site since 1898, closed in 2006 and was sold to a private owner in 2010 Picture by Mark Westley
Thetford Cottage Hospital, on the site since 1898, closed in 2006 and was sold to a private owner in 2010 Picture by Mark Westley

Town and district councillor Jane James, who represents Castle ward where the hospital is situated, said: “I am delighted this application to completely demolish the hospital has been withdrawn.

“I, like many residents, was disappointed with the initial designs for the site. My personal view was that 30 units felt like over- development in a conservation area in our town.”

The councillor agreed that the site needed work but was pleased residents’ voices had been heard.

She said: “Developments such as the old Norfolk and Norwich Hospital site in Norwich have managed to retain the façade of the building while developing modern facilities for residents behind.

“I would like to think that this could be achievable on this site, acknowledging the existing conservation area through the retention of the identifiable frontage which has formed part of this streetscape for many years.”

Developer Jianfeng Xu was approached for comment, through his agent, but is yet to respond.



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