Campsite plans at Blickling shelved

The National Trust has shelved plans for a campsite on farmland at Blickling Hall, following some vocal local opposition.

The Trust had been investigating the possibility of turning land at Middle Farm into a campsite as part of a plan to restore the agricultural buildings.

Around 100 residents voiced concerns at a meeting of Oulton Parish Council earlier this summer, citing worries about traffic using the narrow lanes around the site and fears that the site would affect the landscape.

Despite reassurances that the site would be sympathetically designed and would create jobs and local opportunities, one accused the National Trust of “abandoning Lord Lothian’s legacy for protecting all that is best in the Norfolk countryside” and calling it an attack on the quality of life and the landscape.”

Helen Bailey, General Manager of the Blickling Estate, said: “We were keen to hear the views of the local community and local stakeholders on our proposed scheme for a campsite at Blickling; a scheme that came about as we try to find a way to preserve the vernacular agricultural buildings at Middle Farm.

“Having listened to the feedback regarding the scale and type of development we have reviewed the project and decided not to progress with the current scheme at Middle Farm.”

But she said they were going back to the drawing board as the buildings needed to be restored.

“The buildings at Middle Farm are an integral part of the history of Blickling Estate and we will now need to find a new option for their restoration,” she said.

“We hope to continue working with the community, to come up with a new plan to safeguard these buildings that is appropriate and sympathetic to the setting and significance of Blickling.”

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