Our popular seaside town is being ruined by newbuild homes – they don't fit with our area | The Sun
RESIDENTS in a popular seaside town say it is being ruined by newbuild homes – claiming they don't fit with the area.
Wells-next-to-the-Sea in north Norfolk is one of the east coast's most picturesque resorts, but some locals are "up in arms" over plans to build 51 houses in the area.
Furious locals shared their thoughts about the plan on social media.
Norfolk resident Derek said: "Go build somewhere else – Norfolk is already overcrowded.
"Proper north Norfolk folks can't afford to live here, we're standing on our heads.
"The second-home owners only reappear when the sun starts to shine.
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"If you're not a local you will never understand."
Rowena, who has lived in the area for 40 years, said: "I wonder how much more Wells can cope with, to be honest."
North Norfolk local Jan said: "Norfolk needs genuine affordable homes for local people – and an infrastructure that will support them, including healthcare, schools and transport.
"What it doesn't need is another load of high-end housing, much of which will become second homes or holiday lets."
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Over a third of properties in Wells are currently second homes or holiday homes – with average house prices more than 14 times the average household income.
Developer Holkham Estate, which is owned by House of Lords peer the Earl of Leicester, is Norfolk's largest private estate – at over 25,000 acres, including most of the land around Wells.
It said that 10 per cent of the newbuilds would be rented out to Wells locals – while the rest would become social housing or sold to the highest bidder.
Holkham boss James Bracey told Eastern Daily Press: "We are keenly aware of the difficulty local people face in finding affordable accommodation in one of the most sought-after locations to live and visit in the country."
The planned newbuild complex would have 1.5 acres of open space – with 45 per cent of properties put up for private sale.
Some locals were more enthusiastic about the planned newbuilds in the pretty seaside town.
Housing campaigner Lynne Burdon said: "This represents one step in the right direction for us, as we have 46 families waiting for homes, and six are homeless, so it is a big help.
"We are desperate for more affordable accommodation in Wells and this will help towards that."
Councillor Mel Catton said: "The town has to be grateful that Holkham is providing Wells with additional housing, regardless of what they look like.
"There are people up in arms, but personally, my view is any accommodation which is provided for the town, whether for tourists or the locals, is good.
"Wells need affordable houses we all know that, but we have to be careful that we don’t put too many restrictions on the current situation in the town as I’m afraid we could deter tourism coming in."
Mel added: "People are always against second homes, but tourism is the lifeblood of the town.
"If we didn't have tourism then Wells would die.
"We do not want to put a 'town closed' sign on Wells. We want everyone to work together."
Holkham is running its own online online consultation until June 21 – before it lodges a planning application later this summer.
It comes after Norfolk locals slammed a new "Bond villain" house which they say has ruined the area.
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Residents in another pretty seaside village have blasted posh second home owners for turning it into a "ghost town" where locals can't afford to buy.
A picturesque village was also "ruined" by newbuild nightmare homes left to rot for years.
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