Plans for controversial village wedding venue get green light
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
Permission has been granted for weddings to be hosted on a three-acre field - a proposal which had drawn widespread opposition.
Around 200 villagers had objected to the prospect of Dove Barn Meadow, off the A134 in Northwold, becoming a venue for weddings.
A petition against the plan had been signed by 189 people, while 58 letters of objection were sent to King’s Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council.
Their concerns were focused on road safety and noise pollution – the latter following an event on the land in September, when residents reported hearing “incessant, thumping music”.
But the applicant, Thomas Janes, maintained it bore no relation to his license application and was instead a one-off, socially-distanced festival.
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And that same stance was taken by the borough council’s licensing committee, which was “inclined to cast this from their minds and focus on the application before them”.
Following a hearing on Wednesday (November 18), committee members retired to consider their decision and have opted to grant the license.
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Cliff Anderson, chairman of Northwold and Whittington Parish Council, said villagers were looking at the possibility of submitting an appeal.
“I cannot see the logic in the committee disregarding the September event,” he added. “That is the only example of an event the applicant has run lately that we can go on.
“Now it is just a matter of looking at our options and deciding what we do next - if anything.”
Weddings can now be hosted at Dove Barn Meadow, subject to conditions which include only “wedding type events” taking place at the venue, while an acoustic assessment must be carried out in advance.
Over a year-long period, up to 12 events including the provision of alcohol will be permitted, with no more than two per month and only on Fridays and Saturdays between 11am and 11pm.
“That is some consolation”, admitted Mr Anderson. “But some, if not all, of the issues we raised over the September event still apply.
“You have still got 12 hours of alcohol consumption, and who knows what sound levels are going to be like on the day?”
Anyone wishing to appeal the decision can do so within 21 days to the magistrates’ court.
Mr Janes has been contacted for comment.