Yesterday, Saturday 10th April, a small socially distanced rally was held on Parkway. Around 20 local people of all ages, some from XR, safely gathered in the wide open green space to demonstrate their objection to the proposed housing development.
The Borough Council has deferred its decision on the unpopular planning application which will destroy the park. Through the pandemic we have seen that people living in urban areas, such as Gaywood, rely on their public green spaces for exercise and mental health.
This demonstration follows the ongoing protests over the council’s plans, such as the recent installation of dozens of childrens shoes to represent how our children always suffer the most from the loss of nature, and last September the public art gallery held on Parkway featuring paintings by a local artist Padmacandra Meek inspired by the wildlife and nature of the space.
Demonstrators held placards featuring slogans, artwork, and animals – such as the vulnerable to extinction Water Vole found at Parkway threatened by the proposed development saying “we need homes too”.
The Parkway housing development will threaten at least 58 mature trees in excellent condition and a large lush green reed-bed with reeds over 5 feet tall which is home for the almost extinct water vole. It will cause a loss of wildlife, loss of flood protection, loss of carbon sequestration, and more pressure on Reffley Wood. The Norfolk Wildlife Trust says that the site has the potential to become an Urban Nature Reserve.
The new road route passes the gates of 3 schools bringing more vehicles so more pollution; carbon dioxide and harmful particulates, to over 1200 school age children. The prospect of increased levels of harmful nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter is a cause of great concern in the area.