More chickens for Suffolk company

PLANNERS are set to ignore an objection from the Environment Agency to proposed development within a river's flood plain.Hevingham Chicken Limited wants to build an additional 9,000-bird unit on its existing factory farming site close to the River Waveney at Weybread.

PLANNERS are set to ignore an objection from the Environment Agency to proposed development within a river's flood plain.

Hevingham Chicken Limited wants to build an additional 9,000-bird unit on its existing factory farming site close to the River Waveney at Weybread.

Local residents are objecting on the grounds that the development will damage the setting of a listed building and aggravate smell and noise problems.

The Environment Agency has lodged an objection because the site

is within an area of the Waveney subject to periodic flooding.

It wants the chicken company to carry out a flood risk analysis and provide raised floor levels in the proposed building.

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However, Mid Suffolk planning officers say refusal of the application on the grounds of flood risk would be difficult to sustain.

They are recommending that members of the area planning committee approve the plan.

Granting of planning permission will be another blow to the Environment Agency's strategy of trying to prevent further development in flood plains.

The strategy, which reflects Government planning guidance, has been introduced partly as a result of the increased risk of flooding posed by climate change, induced by global warming.

Many homes and business premises have been built in flood plains during the past few decades.

The agency has tried with mixed success over the past few years to persuade planning authorities to halt further development in flood plains.

Mid Suffolk District Council's own planning policy document says it will not normally permit development or the intensification of existing uses in areas at risk from flooding.

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