Councillors have again voted for five homes to be built on a builders’ yard in Thetford - after the existence of an underground oil pipeline was flagged up with them. 

The development had previously received permission from Breckland Council at a meeting in November. 

But the authority’s planning committee gave a fresh stamp of approval to the scheme at a meeting on Tuesday, December 13.

It had been brought back to the committee because they had not previously discussed the fact that an oil pipeline, managed by Exolum, runs along the site’s northern edge, just a few metres from the homes.

Exolum said they had no objection to the scheme, provided that care was taken to leave the pipeline unaffected during construction and they will continue to be able to access it to maintain it after the houses have been built. 

Resident Glenn Williams, who previously objected to the scheme, asked why the pipeline had not been raised in November.

A planning officer said he only became aware of the pipeline’s significance as a material planning consideration after returning from a period of annual leave. 

Councillors voted in favour of the application with new conditions around the pipeline attached.