Romford flat conversion branded “disgusting”

Plans to change a Romford flat into an office were branded “disgusting” by a councillor last night (Thursday).

The council wanted to turn a two-bedroom flat in Victoria House, in Durham Avenue into an office and to remove a nearby portable building.

The ground-floor flat has been vacant since August 2008 and is no longer used as housing accommodation.

The officer’s report said: “Homes in Havering have been pursuing this proposed change of use for some time and therefore, the flat was not re-let.

“The flat would be used as office accommodation for the local tenant management organisation Delta, which would be beneficial to the residents of the Victoria House estate.”


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Officers recommended approval of the application, but Cllr Eric Munday (Con, Squirrel’s Heath) said at the meeting: “There’s an acceptable office already in existence and it has been very well looked after.

“I think it’s disgraceful this flat has been vacant for more than two years. We are in desperate need for this kind of accommodation. It’s unacceptable that it should be recommended for approval.”

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Cllr Jeffrey Brace on the panel said: “This should be refused on the grounds we need more housing. This is good living accommodation for people to live in and we want to turn it into an office? It can be used for much-needed accommodation.”

Cllr Sandra Binnion said: “This kind of accommodation would provide housing for young families especially and is much needed.”

The committee refused it unanimously.

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