Woodford Green campaigners seek legal help to fight school expansion

Woodbridge high school

Woodbridge high school - Credit: Archant

Campaigners are seeking legal advice in a bid to step up their fight against plans to expand a school.

Residents of Mallards Road, Woodford Green, wrote a letter to Redbridge Council chief executive Roger Hampson saying they were “seeking legal remedies” to have the approved plans to expand Woodbridge High School in St Barnabas Road, Woodford Green, thrown out.

The plan to build a one-storey fitness suite and a three-storey creative arts building is being contested on traffic and disruption grounds.

The residents, who live beside the school, are objecting to two new car park access gates in their street, which they believe will create “chaos”.

The letter objects to the approved plan on the grounds of the council’s “failure to keep adequate records of public meetings” and a “refusal to engage in any way with a key stakeholder”.

The letter was signed by 29 households in the street.

Derek Faulkner, who launched a petition against the plan in March, said: “If you come down this road in the morning, it’s a nightmare.

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“It’s only going to get worse, what’s going to happen if emergency services need to come through? We’re just not being listened to at all.”

The plans allow the school to increase pupil numbers from about 1,550 to 1,970 with staff numbers also growing to cope with the expansion.

The petition in March said safety in the “narrow cul-de-sac” would be compromised.

A council spokesman said: “Redbridge Council follows correct planning procedures to give local people adequate time and opportunity to raise objections and concerns about possible developments.

“This application was approved in February and all the appropriate procedures were followed with a consultation and meetings held.

“While we always value and listen to the opinions of our residents the formal process for consultation on this particular development has ended and a decision has been taken.”