Beam Park: Developer sorry for continuing to advertise 'unapproved' station

An advert for a new train station at Beam Park, Rainham

Buyer Cleo Caldicott (inset) said she was 'appalled' that adverts remained up around the Beam Park development, promoting 'a new train station' - Credit: Graham Williamson / Cleo Caldicott

A developer has apologised after adverts for a new train station in Beam Park, Rainham, remained up months after it emerged that it had never been approved.

Hoarding emblazoned with the logos of two developers, Countryside Properties and L&Q, remained up in New Road last week, touting a "new train station and direct transport links”.

Hoarding promoting a new station at Beam Park, Rainham

The hoarding, which features the branding of both L&Q and Countryside Properties, went up in summer and advertised 'a new train station' - Credit: Google Streetview

But in September, it emerged that the Department for Transport (DfT) said it had never approved the station and refuses to do so unless City Hall agrees to fund any associated financial losses in perpetuity.

Yet as buyers plotted legal action over the anticipated non-delivery of what they say was the estate’s main selling point, boards at the site continued to suggest the station was coming.

Cleo Caldicott, one of the buyers, said: “I am absolutely appalled that the development continued to falsely advertise that a station was coming despite knowing there was no longer permission for it to be built.”

A board advertising a new station in Beam Park, Rainham

The hoarding remained up in New Road, Rainham, in mid-December - months after it emerged that the station's future was in doubt - Credit: Graham Williamson

An L&Q spokesperson said: “We apologise for any confusion caused by the hoarding, and will be updating this as soon as possible.

“We would never purposely sell homes to residents on the basis of incorrect information, and prospective customers are always made aware that the station is proposed.”

A spokesperson for Countryside said it had nothing to add to L&Q’s statement.

Cllr Graham Williamson (South Hornchurch, Independent Residents' Group) said while the boards should not have been left up, he sympathised with the developers.

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“The real victims in all this are the buyers, of course, but the developers are also victims,” he said.

“They were granted planning permission by the council and the GLA, based on a station that hadn’t been signed off.”

Havering councillor Graham Williamson

Graham Williamson said the developers were victims, having been granted permission to build homes around a station which was never approved by government - Credit: Graham Williamson

Havering Council has said its planning decisions were informed by the GLA’s London Plan, which included the station.

The GLA has offered to cover ten years of financial losses and has said it is continuing to negotiate with the DfT.

L&Q said the station remained “one of the key components of the Beam Park regeneration”.

“Together with our partners, we remain fully committed to delivering it,” a spokesperson said. “We’re continuing to speak with the DfT, alongside a range of other organisations with a stake in the project, to find a way forward.”

For more, read:

Beam Park: 'We were sold a dream that's not going to happen'

Government 'never gave support for Beam Park station', minister says

Plans for nearly 900 homes around Beam park iced