Determined developer could be allowed to build house on Underwood Square in Leigh

A developer that has faced fierce opposition over plans to build on green space in Leigh-on-Sea could finally get planning approval next week after four refusals in just two years.

It is the latest in a series of planning applications from Intex Properties to be submitted to Southend Council proposing a range of different ideas for developing land on Underwood Square – almost every one of them has been thrown out.

The rejected proposals have included plans for four homes, two homes and a chalet.

The last application was for four homes that was rejected in December after garnering almost 100 objections from neighbours, including 16 letters and a petition with 80 signatures.

But it could be fifth time lucky for the developer, as council officers have recommended that planning permission is granted for a two-storey detached house.

It will include five double bedrooms, a single storey conservatory and two parking spaces.

This time around 10 letters of objection have been sent to the council, with neighbours describing the plans as “no different from the previous reasons for refusal”, “overbearing” and “over development for the site”.

Residents have also said they want to see a proper, “comprehensive” plan for the site because the developer keeps attempting to build multiple homes on the site by putting forward several different applications.

On top of the proposal being discussed next week, the developer has submitted another application for four extra homes to be built close by.

These applications are also revisions of past plans which were refused at the end of the year.

Labour councillor Matt Dent was one of the members who considered the single house plan in November.

He said: “It is a whole set of applications which each time have to be considered individually and on their own merits. It can be difficult to understand but I believe the developer is aiming to get the number of houses they initially wanted by sub-dividing it into a number of applications.

“Each will have to be considered on its own merit. When we were deciding on the application in November we were aware of another application but we couldn’t take that into consideration when making the decision.”

The planning meeting will be held on Wednesday afternoon at the civic offices.


Steve Shaw

Local Democracy Reporter