Wanstead flats plans look set to go ahead

Plans to add new flats on top of Wanstead tower blocks have moved a step closer, despite the objections of existing residents.

The owner of the Malcolm Way estate, Kasner Charitable Trust, wants to add an extra floor to all six blocks, adding 20 new flats in total.

Redbridge Council rejected a similar set of plans in 2016 but the latest applications, submitted in March, were received after Prime Minister Boris Johnson changed building laws last year.

The change, one of many intended to boost housebuilding, means roof extensions of up to two storeys now only require “prior approval” from councils, rather than full planning permission.

Objecting to the plans via the council’s website, Malcolm Way resident Dan McCauley wrote: “The proposed new flats appear to be smaller in space than those below them and smaller than those refused by the council in 2016.

“They would be fourth floor flats without lifts, disabled access, balconies or access to open space.

“The proposed development will result in loss of light, excess pollution, highway congestion, and destruction of wildlife.”

Another resident, Jeff Windish, said: “We are scared [the trust] are going to wreck our living quarters.

“We are seconds away from a conservation area and all these guys want to do is make a profit.”

Once KCT has submitted plans for cycle parking and waste and recycling storage and explained how it will deal with the impact of construction traffic, the plans will be allowed to go ahead.

Two of the blocks must also have glazed north facing windows and screening for the proposed roof terrace in order to “limit the impact of neighbouring amenity”.

The Kasner Charitable Trust was set up by Joseph Kasner, based in Barnet, to give grants to organisations supporting Jewish people in Israel and London.

The trust reported an annual income of a couple of hundred thousands of pounds each year until after his death in 2015, when its reported income quickly ballooned to more than £11 million.

The Kasner Charitable Trust had not supplied a statement at time of publication.

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Victoria Munro

Local Democracy Reporter