Havering Council planning committee throws out South Hornchurch’s 2,900-home Beam Park development over high-rise fears

CGI of the proposed Beam Park development

CGI of the proposed Beam Park development - Credit: MPC

Havering Council’s planning committee threw out plans for a huge 2,900 home development in the south of the borough last night (Thursday, April 5) over concerns about the height of the proposed apartment blocks.

The borough’s regulatory services committee refused the council’s own plans for the Beam Park development, which is a cross-borders development in Rainham and South Hornchurch that would see funded and developed by both Havering and the neighbouring borough of Barking and Dagenham.

But last night the application for planning permission for the entire site – which would include two new primary schools and nurseries, a number of new community spaces and a new Beam Park Station, operated by C2C – was rejected.

Councillor Graham Williamson, of the Independent Residents’ Group, sits on the committee, and said it was the developer’s decision to build apartment blocks ranging from five to nine storeys that the committee could not bring itself to agree with.

He told the Recorder: “We are not opposed to the development in principle, but it has to be done properly, with the views of what residents want taken into account.

“In it’s current form the application would be a carbuncle to the area.”

The report presented to the committee accepted that the current plans breached the borough’s planning guidelines for the development, but still recommended councillors approve planning permission as these guidelines were “a comprehensive and flexible plan”.

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It read: “Whilst the heights proposed in places exceed those suggested in the [guidelines] it is considered that the development exhibits none of the characteristics of overdevelopment.

“There is good separation between blocks, no unacceptable overlooking, interlooking or privacy concerns, the development complies with all space standards and requirements and there are no daylighting or sunlight issues.”

But Cllr Williamson added: “If built as presented it would be more fitting of something in inner-London rather than an outer-borough.

“I wish developers had listened to councillor and residents concerns earlier.”

The application will now instead go before the Mayor’s Office, who will either force it through or reject it entirely.

If the proposal is approved the work would be carried out in eight phases, and is not scheduled to be completed until 2030, although only phases one and two of the building work would be carried out in Havering.

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