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Plans for new Cromer police station

PUBLISHED: 11:16 03 March 2008 | UPDATED: 08:52 13 July 2010

A new police station for Cromer is earmarked for the entrance to the district council headquarters.

An "operational employment base" with space for up to 40 staff and 25 vehicles will be put on the site of the current caretaker's bungalow next to the Holt Road offices of North Norfolk District Council, if plans are given the go ahead.

A new police station for Cromer is earmarked for the entrance to the district council headquarters.

An “operational employment base” with space for up to 40 staff and 25 vehicles will be put on the site of the current caretaker's bungalow next to the Holt Road offices of North Norfolk District Council, if plans are given the go ahead.

The existing station, next to the courthouse further down the Holt Road, is being replaced under a countywide strategic plan to have fewer, but more modern stations - coupled with new systems of public contact such as information kiosks at councils, libraries, schools and shops.

The Cromer base, which will be for Sheringham officers too, is planned as a building with a “green” sedum matting roof and solar panels, plus walls finished in weatherboarding, render and brick.

Up to 25 people at a time would be on shift at the station, which would have public access, a car park which took 12 spaces from the council car park, and a site which also partly ate into the next door farm field.

The site is zoned in an employment area, but is also in the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - which has seen concerns raised over previous development ideas, ranging from now-defunct hospital and garden centre schemes to a current travellers' transit camp on the farmland.

But a report to councillors says the police base would extend 17m into the countryside, which was a “relatively minor encroachment”, and would have “no significant impact” on the character of the AONB.

The parking loss on a 240-space area was also minor and pressure on the area should be reduced when the temporary housing trust offices relocated to North Walsham.

It also says its prominent position on the Holt road was “deliberate” to “establish the presence of the facility.

The council's conservation and design manager Phil Godwin airs some concerns that the design was a “one size fits all solution” which was the same as other new police bases across the county, but generally thought it was acceptable and would “sit reasonably well into the landscape”.

Highways officials flag up worries that loss of spaces on an often crowded council car parking might lead to overflow parking on the main A148 road, and say the relocation of the station away from the town centre could make the facility less accessible to some members of the community.

The district council's east area development control committee will be recommended to approve the plans on Thursday .

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