Your questions, answered
You'll find some of the most frequently asked questions below but if you find your question isn't there please get in contact with us via our contact form.
Who’s doing this?
We are Flagship Group, working together with a range of experts. We are also working closely with a range of other organisations as we know that we can only make a real difference if we work together. In November 2019 Flagship Group entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Norfolk County Council and Breckland Council. What this means is that we committed to work together for the benefit of the Abbey.
Why are you doing this?
We know from what you’ve told us that there are things that you love about living on the Abbey, but we also know that there are issues too – things such as anti-social behaviour, fly tipping, the condition of the properties, and use of the garage sites. We want to bring long-term improvements to the Abbey that tackle the issues that you have told us about in our conversations.
The benefits would be for today’s and tomorrow’s residents. The Abbey estate is an important part of Thetford: what benefits the Abbey estate, and its residents will benefit Thetford as a whole.
This is a once in a generation opportunity for the Abbey.
Will you make any money out of this?
No, absolutely not. We will make no profit, any extra will go towards providing affordable homes and creating sustainable communities
How are you listening to residents’ views?
We began speaking to residents in 2019 to find out what matters to you in your community. Then, in 2021, we carried out consultation on possible options for the Abbey. We heard your feedback and we’ve considered this carefully. We’ve also been carrying out work to understand what improvements might be possible for the Abbey; we’ve been thinking about things such as costs and disruption.
And, we’re going to keep on listening to your views in the months and years to come: whatever we do on the Abbey will be shaped with your feedback. You can have your say via our contact form linked below.
What’s the timescale for this?
We expect to have a plan for the Abbey ready by the end of the year to share with you at a public exhibition. Once we have a plan, we have to go through various processes before we can start work. We don’t expect work to start for 3-4 years. And, we won’t carry out all the work at once, whatever we do will be done in phases. We want to cause minimal disruption for the community.
You might see people around and about carrying out surveys for us but that absolutely does not mean that any work has started.
Before & during works
Where will I be rehoused whilst the work is happening?
We don’t know the full details of this at this moment in time. But we want to assure you that we’ll work with you to provide you with somewhere that suits your needs.
I'm worried you're going to make me homeless, is this true?
No, if demolition was to take place, we would offer you a replacement home on the Abbey or fair market value for your home. We will also support you throughout the process as best as we can.
Will anyone who currently lives on the estate be removed?
We want as many people as possible who currently live on the Abbey, to stay. That's why we're offering a replacement home to those affected so that people who want to stay, can do so.
Garages & open spaces
Are you going to knock down all the current garages?
This hasn’t been decided yet. You’ll see that we’ve included all garages across the Abbey within our outline planning application. However, this still just an idea. As the work is going to happen over a long period of time, we’ve included all garages to ensure we’ve as much flexibility as possible as we progress.
If my garage is removed, are you going to provide me with alternative storage?
If your garage is affected, we will have a conversation with you closer to the time to understand what you need and work out a solution, together.
Will Backs Greens be turned into carparking?
We have come up with several ideas to make the most use of the back greens, ranging from space for play, picnic and seating areas, planting and wildlife, access from back gardens, and secure resident parking.
I’m a homeowner without a mortgage, I won’t be able to get a new mortgage if you demolish my home. What can i do?
If you own your home, mortgage-free, and choose to stay on the Abbey, we’ll give you a like-for-like replacement home, without the need for a new mortgage.
Will I have to pay rent on a new home if I don’t have a mortgage?
If you own your home and don’t have a mortgage, and you are offered a replacement home on the Abbey, you will not have to pay rent on that property.
You’ve already decided what my homes worth, how will this work?
If you own your home, and it’s affected by demolition, we will pay you at least fair market value. Offers will be compensation code compliant, and compensation will be in addition to the offer you receive. We’ll also provide extra support, whether that be for moving costs, or extra fees that you may face during the process.
Will the new homes will be smaller than what we have now?
The rules about building homes have changed since the Abbey was built, and standard house sizes are actually now larger than they were back then. If homes are replaced, we will replace them on a like-for-like basis with the aim of meeting local housing needs.
I'm concerned you won't be able to maintain the homes for us?
The new homes will be built to a high standard and will be more energy efficient. This means that not only will they be cheaper to run, but they will also be easier to maintain.
I like the people I live next to & don't want to move, what options do i have?
If you decide that you want to stay on the Abbey, and you want to live close to the people you currently live near to, we will do our best to keep you as close together as possible.