1. ITV Report

Hethersett residents fight plans to build on The Paddocks

Developers want to put up 27 houses on a spot known as The Paddock. Photo:

People in Hethersett near Norwich are fighting plans to build homes on land they say is sacred to the village.

Developers want to put up 27 houses on a spot known as The Paddock - one of a number of planned developments in the area. But others say it must be saved for wildlife, and the community.

In 1999, villagers successfully fought against houses being built on The Paddock, but now history's repeating itself. Once more a local group are fighting tooth and nail to stop it.

"There are lots and lots of objections on the South Norfolk Council website, they're from all over the village. It's not just from people who live around here.

"This is enjoyed by people who walk down Queen's Road, generations of children with their mothers have stopped and looked across at the grazing animals, it's an important area of the open space, an important reminder of the countryside past of Hethersett."

– James Utting, Local resident
Save Hethersett Paddock poster.

A few miles from Norwich, a fast growing city, a number of different developers are building homes in Hethersett. Some are worried too many new homes could destroy the village's character.

The Paddock is privately owned, but also designated a public open space - a recognition of its local importance. Fleur Developments, who put forward the plans, say that they would make the space accessible to all.

"This site allows access through the area for cyclists and pedestrians and for people to use it, the local community use it as it was intended. At the same time we can allow new wildlife to come in, we are creating grass corridors for the existing wildlife."

– Joff Booker, Director, Fleur Developments

In the end the Paddock's fate will fall to South Norfolk Council. They say they are all ears to the varying viewpoints, and want people to send in comments to make their feelings known.