Ten new homes are to be built on the edge of a village which was once home to Britain’s largest aerodrome.

The decision to approve the new development in Narborough, near Swaffham, was made unanimously by councillors.

The site lies a short distance from the edge of a former military aerodrome which once covered almost 1,000 acres of countryside and was the largest in Britain.

It opened during the First World War as a base for aircraft defending the country against Zeppelin raids. Among those to serve there was WE Johns, creator of Biggles, the fictional flying ace.

The site - which is near RAF Marham - closed after the war, with the last hangar removed in 1977.

Watton & Swaffham Times: Narborough was one of the largest airfields in England during the First World War, at more than 900 acres.Narborough was one of the largest airfields in England during the First World War, at more than 900 acres. (Image: Submitted)

Slightly different plans for the new housing development, on land off Narford Road, had already been permitted by Breckland Council’s planning committee earlier this year, but at a new meeting on Tuesday, September 6, councillors discussed whether to approve an altered version of the scheme.

Local Conservative councillor Peter Wilkinson said that previous concerns he’d had about the scheme had been addressed by the new application.

“Access onto Narford Road is going to be a lot safer than accessing onto the Swaffham Road, the old A47, which is a quite busy, fast road,” he said.

The earlier version of the scheme had proposed making four of the ten homes affordable, but the new version reduces that number to three.

The council’s housing enabling officer said this number was still “acceptable in order to meet current housing need” and that the plans showed that the affordable homes would blend in well with the other homes.

A new private drive would run from Narford Road and over a field, which was last used for horticultural purposes. Residents in the new homes will have views over sheep grazing in the field.

Cattle grids would be installed at either end of the private road, with fencing enclosing the paddock itself.

The new application has flipped the ten homes so that they face north over the paddock, rather than south to face a plantation of trees.

The homes will be equipped with electric vehicle charging points and range from two to five bedrooms.

A footpath would link the development with Swaffham Road.

As well as lying near the former aerodrome, the new homes are close to the now disused Lynn and Dereham Railway, which closed in 1968.

The railway passed between the airfield and the built-up area of the village and the trackbed can still be seen in aerial photographs today.