Councillors reject plans to build care home in Upminster

Plans to build a care home on the site of a former police station were thrown out by the planning committee, despite opposition from ward councillors.

The Regulatory Services Planning Committee voted nine to two to reject plans for the 40 bed residential home in St Mary’s Lane, Upminster on Thursday August 2 (yesterday).

Councillors voted to reject the application because of its size and bulk.

Cllr Steven Kelly (Con, Emerson Park) said: “I have got nothing against the developers and the usage of the building, but it is just too big for the site.

“If they weren’t so greedy and maybe made it a bit smaller it would be a good development, but as it stands, it is unacceptable.”

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The proposals were to build a mock style Tudor building which would be used for the care of the elderly with 11 parking spaces.

The application was originally called in by Cllr Linda Van Den Hende (RA, Upminster) because she believed that the size and traditional design was in keeping with the area.

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She said: “There are no reasons that this application should be rejected, I am supporting the application because it is a big vacant site.

“It will enhance the street scene and will provide an attractive flow for the hole that is there.

“It’s a care home and it will provide jobs in the area.”

Cllr Ron Ower (RA, Upminster) also supported the application, before putting forward a motion for approval, which was rejected.

He said: “Our population is growing older, we need this sort of facility in the area.

“I think that we can give planning permission and just add on conditions to it, but I don’t think it is something that we should refuse.”

Other councillors also expressed their concern about the development.

Cllr Pam Light (Con, Harold Wood) was worried about the lack of amenity space for the residents.

She said: “I do agree that a care home is needed in the area, but I believe that it’s far too big and bulky.

“There is also a lack of amenity space, are these people going to be in their rooms all day?”

Concerns were also raised from Cllr David Durant (Independent Local Residents’ Group, Rainham and Wennington) and Cllr Paul McGeary (Lab, Heaton).

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