Final phase of consultation begins over future of Thetford estate

abbey estate park

How a new neighbourhood park might look on the Abbey Estate at Thetford - Credit: Flagship

People living on a major estate in Thetford are being urged to have their say as a final stage of consultation to help shape its future begins.

The Flagship Group is asking people in the Abbey Estate for ideas which it hopes could benefit the area for "generations to come".

The estate is set for a revamp, though details on what exactly will change are yet to be confirmed.

Previous rounds of the consultation, which initially started in the summer, have seen around 1,540 surveys completed - more than 600 of which were filled in during the third stage of consultation in October.

Feedback included the need for better parking and lighting across the estate, measures to address fly-tipping and improvements to shops and facilities for young people.

Priorities also included a neighbourhood park and river walk, while people also gave ideas for back gardens, communal green space and the layout of new homes.

The Abbey Estate in Thetford celebrates 50 years.
Byline: Sonya Duncan
Copyright: Archant 2017

The Abbey Estate. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

The final round of consultation asks people for their thoughts on new homes, shops and a range of play facilities.

The Flagship Group said all the ideas put forward throughout the consultation have been "informed by feedback gathered" during a number of engagement sessions between 2019 and 2020.

The Abbey Estate in Thetford celebrates 50 years.
Byline: Sonya Duncan
Copyright: Archant 2017

Shops on the Abbey estate in Thetford - Credit: Sonya Duncan

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Peter Hawes, chairman of Flagship Group, said: “The community has given us a fantastic insight into what the priorities are for their estate, and we have been listening.

"We’ve heard what’s good, and what could be better and we want to tackle the issues that people have told us about so that the Abbey can be a better place for everyone.

“I know that people often have different and strong opinions on what they want for the Abbey and we completely understand that."

He said they would continue to work with residents.

Every person living on the estate is receiving a brochure which outlines possible improvements for the area. They can have their say by completing an online poll before December 20 by visiting

People can also attend information sessions in the Abbey Neighbourhood Centre on December 7 from 2pm to 4pm, December 14 from 5pm to 8pm, December 16 from 2pm to 4pm and December 18 from 10am to 12pm.

Pre-book attendance by adding your name to the sign-up sheets at the centre or arranging a call by emailing or calling 0808 168 4555.

Timeline of consultation on the Abbey Estate: 

The estate is more than 50 years old and could be set for major changes in a bid to improve it.

Flagship started conversations with people living there in 2019 following concerns over issues such as anti-social behaviour, fly-tipping and the condition of the properties.

Drop-in sessions were held between September 2019 and March 2020 to hear from the community.

The company said it started to tackle issues on the estate this year and came up with ideas and options, which it has been consulting on since the summer.

There have been four phases of feedback.

Chief executive David McQuade said the company wants to "end the housing crisis in the east of England" and provide good quality homes.

Flagship has been working with Norfolk County Council, Breckland Council and other local partners from November 2019.

Graham Plant, NCC's deputy leader, said he wants to hear from residents to "improve the estate and the local area".

Graham Plant, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for growing the economy. Picture: Jamie Honeywoo

Graham Plant, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for growing the economy. Picture: Jamie Honeywood - Credit: Archant