Thetford estates to get facelift

By Ian ClarkeA �16m plan has been outlined to carry out radical changes to housing estates in Thetford.

By Ian Clarke

A �16m plan has been outlined to carry out radical changes to housing estates in Thetford.

Creating dozens of new homes - including many affordable properties - upgrading existing houses, improving parking and converting a homeless hostel are among the projects in a report presented to the Board of Moving Thetford Forward (MTF).

They feature a mixture of schemes at various levels of progress from early proposals to completed schemes including the use of �50,000 of MTF and Flagship funding to prepare strategic plans for the existing estates of Abbey, Redcastle Furze, Barnham Cross and Ladys.

Work is due to start in the autumn - subject to grant funding - on a �10m redevelopment of Sweyn Close involving 66 homes, including 34 new ones

Initial work has already been completed on Barnham Cross Estate including the conversion of vacant garage and parking areas on Ash Close and Fir Walk into eight new affordable rented homes with additional parking spaces and garages.

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All of the homes have all been occupied by existing Thetford residents.

There are also plans to improve parking on Beech Close and four of five “Green grant” projects have been completed including creating private and secure enclosed gardens for sheltered housing residents to enjoy in Salisbury/York Way, improved fencing and pathways in Gloucester Way and new fencing around green space in Chester and Coventry Way.

A disused industrial site in Canterbury Way has also been earmarked for substantial redevelopment to create 18 social rented, two bedroom flats and an eight bed supported housing facility for young people which will deliver accommodation and support to help vulnerable young residents of Thetford.

The �1.3m Breckland Council funded conversion of John Room House into 10 bedsits and 12 one-bed flats has been completed.

Local businessman and Moving Thetford Forward Board member Joe Pearson said: “Many people in Thetford are talking about the anticipated growth in housing and high profile projects such as the new bus interchange and the development of an Academy are grabbing headlines. The importance of the housing initiatives which improve the lives of existing Thetford residents should be celebrated. There is a huge raft of work that has been undertaken by officers of Breckland Council in partnership with organisations such as Flagship. The benefits of this work should not be taken for granted.”

Caption: HOW Sweyn Close could look if radical changes are carried out as planned.