A major waterfront redevelopment including a 70-apartment care home, 60 new homes and retail units looks set to get the go-ahead despite archaeologists' concerns.

Fenland council wants to revamp four acres of vacant land along the River Nene, at Nene Parade in Wisbech.

The council's planning committee has been recommended to approve its outline application when it meets on Wednesday, May 31.

A report to councillors says: "This application is in outline form with all matters reserved for a care home up to 70 apartments, commercial floorspace up to 900 sqm and up to 60 dwellings on Fenland District Council owned land and submitted by Fenland Future Ltd."

It adds Fenland Future is a "wholly-owned subsidiary" of the council, whose role is to maximise return from its property portfolio.

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"The site is currently vacant, separated into distinct development plots by the roads," the report goes on.

"The site is adjacent to the port and Nene Parade, providing access to public realm and the riverfront.

"The site is somewhat unkempt and given its prominent relationship with the waterfront is perhaps in need of regeneration via redevelopment."

The report says the site is located on an area of "archaeological sensitivity".

Cambridgeshire County Council's senior archaeologist says it lies to the north of the early medieval core of Wisbech, including the castle of Wisbech, which was later re-used as a prison, around which the medieval town developed.

The official adds a full investigation should be carried out before permission is granted.

The report to the planning committee concludes: "This part of Wisbech is in need of regeneration/redevelopment.

"The supporting documents may have some merit however no details are being submitted for determination and therefore it is only the principle being determined."

It adds whilst recommending approval, this is subject to the issue of archaeology being "satisfactorily addressed" within four months.