Sanders Coaches allowed to use land near country park as parking area
- Credit: Archant
A bus company has been given permission to use grassland near a country park as an overflow car park.
Norfolk-based Sanders Coaches Ltd will transform the 0.25 hectare site at Hempstead Road business centre in Holt.
Plans include forming a concrete-surfaced bus turning area, overflow bus parking area and staff car parking area on the land, close to Holt Country Park.
Sanders currently operates out of a site on the opposite side of Hempstead Road.
In a statement, it said the firm had to “cope with the increasing demand for public transport in North Norfolk”.
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It added: “As other bus companies – such as Stagecoach, Go Ahead and First Eastern Countries – have terminated their bus services for North Norfolk, Sanders Coaches Ltd has been taking over the withdrawn services in order to keep up with the public demand and to avoid disruption to the general public.
“As additional vehicles are required within the fleet, the site in which Sanders Coaches Ltd currently operates is not suitable to accommodate extra vehicles.”
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The proposal, which has been permitted by North Norfolk District Council under delegated powers, was backed by North Norfolk MP Duncan Baker.
He said: “Sanders bus company is a valuable company not just to Holt but all of north Norfolk. It is essential we support them to be able to continue their business. The prospect of them not being able to operate is not only detrimental to the economy but also to the community that is totally reliant on a viable bus network.
“If their business fails, many communities will be cut off and isolated, so it is essential we give them the support they need.
“I understand concerns, primarily to noise, and that is important. But that can be mitigated with appropriate measures.”
However, the application received several objections from nearby residents.
One person, whose name was withheld, said: “The combination of increased fumes and emissions, the resulting noise and light pollution would impact not only on homes close to this part of the park but would also be harmful to wildlife, driving it out and away from the park.”