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Campaigners ‘aghast’ at council proposals to convert Newbury Park office block into hostel

08:54 06 August 2014

The campaigners who are protesting against proposals to convert a Newbury Park office block into a hostel

The campaigners who are protesting against proposals to convert a Newbury Park office block into a hostel

Archant

Campaigners are fighting plans to open a hostel near their homes, saying it will cause overcrowding and disruption to the area.

A group of people living in and around Perth Terrace, Newbury Park, have launched a petition against Redbridge Council proposals to convert an office block.

They have collected more than 60 signatures so far.

William Nowgan, of Perth Road, said: “We are all absolutely aghast at the idea. We do not know what kind of people are going to go in there and how many people to a room will there be?

“It has been fine as offices and is just not a suitable place for a hostel.”

The accommodation would consist of 23 family rooms, with shared kitchens and bathrooms.

Barry Thomerson, 68, of Perth Road, said: “Everyone has been protesting.

“There is going to be so much noise and disturbance.

“The traffic will be absolutely horrendous – there’s a school already being built 100 yards away.

“How can we have people in their rooms all day – where are they going to go?”

He added: “We hope it won’t go through, it just doesn’t make sense to me. We will go to judicial review if we have to.”

A council spokesman said the authority was under a lot of pressure to find suitable accommodation for those in need and the hostel would provide “much-needed emergency temporary accommodation” for homeless people, the majority of them families.

She added: “We have experience in successfully managing similar hostels in the borough, which are also situated in residential areas.

“There are currently three operating under similar models, with very few complaints.”

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