The Echo Reports…

The Echo reports on the meeting between residents and Coral here:

NEIGHBOURS have voiced concerns about plans to build a three-storey building with 19 flats and six shops near their homes.

Residents do not want a pub or takeaway on the site, which is within the grounds of the Asda store in Rawreth Lane, Rayleigh.

There was a packed meeting between about 30 residents and developers, Project Coral, at St Nicholas Church in Rawreth.

The application includes 24 parking spaces and it requested a range of uses for the shops, which can include them being pubs, bars or takewaways.

It has already been recommended for refusal by Rochford District Council officers because of insufficient parking, a lack of affordable housing and the possibility of increased noise, disturbance and traffic.

Officers also described it as a ?poor quality? residential development.

Corey Vost, of Temple Way, Rayleigh, said: ?There are certain types of businesses we don?t want.

?We don?t want a fast food takeaway for the litter and rodent problem. Or the additional traffic that a pub or fast food place will bring.?

Other residents expressed concerns about antisocial behaviour and said they would like a doctor?s surgery there but not shops.

Ben Ellis, of Planning Potential, planning advisors for the developers, denied the firm wanted to build a pub, despite the wide range of potential uses covered by the planning application.

He said: ?We don?t want it to be a pub. We want a good diversity of uses. We would be willing to accept a limit on the types of business units.

?We would consider taking this to the Secretary of State, but that?s not the approach we want to take. We will go back and take into account all the points and make amendments.

?It may be the case we withdraw the application from the next committee and come up with an alternative proposal.?

Project Coral has a conditional contract with Asda which means if the application is rejected, Asda retains ownership of the site. If the application gains approval, then Project Coral has complete ownership of the land Planning consent was granted for a mixed-use development at the site in June 2003, but this did not include flats.

Rayleigh MP Mark Francois, Rayleigh Town Council, Rawreth Parish Council and Essex County Council have also objected to the proposal.

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