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Banham Poultry applies to move factory out of town centre

PUBLISHED: 13:17 07 May 2019 | UPDATED: 08:17 08 May 2019

Police at Banham Poultry in Attleborough. Picture Simon Parkin.

Police at Banham Poultry in Attleborough. Picture Simon Parkin.

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A town centre factory which has been criticised for its foul odour has started an application to move its processing site.

A town centre factory which has been criticised for its foul odour has started an application to move its processing site.

Banham Poultry, currently located on Station Road in Attleborough, is in the early stages of seeking permission to relocate its chicken processing plant to its former site at Bunns Bank, around 1km southwest of the town centre.

The factory at Bunns Bank was destroyed by a fire in July 1998, costing the company £30 million and prompting a move to the current site on Station Road.

At the time, managing director Michael Foulger said the move was temporary and that it was not Banham's intention to abandon the site it occupied at Bunns Bank.

In 2013 Banham Poultry lodged a similar application to build the replacement factory, which was granted permission.

A scoping report for this revised scheme said that while a material start had been made on the site, above ground construction was yet to commence.

The latest revised factory proposal is for a 20,200 square metre processing plant, around 5,000 square metres larger than initially planned, and would include new equipment to manage odour and emissions.

Local councillors and families living near to the Station Road factory have criticised the company for failing to manage a foul odour compared to "rotting flesh" emanating from its Station Road facility and have called on it to move the base away from the town centre.

However the scoping report acknowledges that there are a number of residential, commercial and industrial properties in the Bunns Bank area.

In its most recent scoping report, Banham Poultry said the main drive for the move was to modernise its facilities.

Nobody at Banham Poultry was available to comment on the application.

Banham Poultry was founded in Norfolk in 1965 to process chickens for local farmers and had been on a growth curve until it hit financial difficulties last year.

Midlands meat manufacturers Chesterfield Poultry bought the company for £4.4 million in 2018 in a move which saved the company from closure and secured more than 1,000 jobs.

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