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Residents 'enormously relieved' after developer drops nine-storey tower block plans

PUBLISHED: 12:06 05 August 2019 | UPDATED: 12:06 05 August 2019

The plan proposes to demolish this nursery in South Woodford and replace it with a nine-storey office building. Picture: Google

The plan proposes to demolish this nursery in South Woodford and replace it with a nine-storey office building. Picture: Google

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Residents in South Woodford are "enormously relieved" after plans to build a nine-storey tower block above a nursery were dropped by developers.

Plans to demolish a two-storey nursery called Incey Winceys in Eastwood Close and build a nine-storey office building in its place were met with some 300 objections.

South Woodford Society, a group aiming to stop over-development of the area, had objected to the plans, saying the proposal was out of character and not in line with the local plan.

Rena Pathak from the society, said: "We are all enormously relieved that the multi-storey plans have been withdrawn.

"The application was too great in scale and absolutely not appropriate for South Woodford.

"However, the question remains the same and that is, why does the planning department even allow this for consideration when it does not fit their own planning policy?"

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Hannah Ince, managing director of Incey Wincey's Day Nursery, told the Recorder she was delighted the plans had been dropped.

When the application was first submitted, she said: "We will be celebrating the 10-year anniversary of Incey Winceys in October and have fought hard to ensure that whatever plans go ahead, we have our nursery on site."

South Woodford councillor Beverley Brewer said there had been a "tremendous" response from the community.

"Around 300 objections were submitted in a matter of days," she said. "I understand it was clear to the developers that they had no realistic chance of success if the application went to the planning committee.

"I believe this sets important precedents for the Station Estate and surrounding area. It shows developers that they cannot just put forward badly thought out plans for a tower block development.

"It also demonstrates beyond any doubt the strong views of local people and businesses - and therefore the importance of prior consultation by anyone who has major plans for this area.

"This is another real victory for the community in opposing the overdevelopment of this site, following the public inquiry a few years ago and then the withdrawal of the proposal for a 'landmark' building from the Redbridge Local Plan more recently."

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