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Appeal lodged against controversial Laindon KFC plans
DEVELOPERS have lodged an appeal after controversial plans for a drive-through KFC were turned down for a second time.
Laindon Holdings first submitted plans for a 24-hour fast food restaurant on the former Laindon Hotel site, in High Road, at the beginning of last year, but they were refused following a string of objections from residents.
The plans resurfaced for a second time in November, with restricted opening times from 10.30am until 12pm, but that was also turned down by Basildon Council due to concerns about traffic, noise disruption and litter.
But now Laindon Holdings has appealed again, despite more than 200 residents signing a petition against it.
Samantha Marsh, 41, of Little Oxcroft, Laindon said: “I thought they would do this. At the end of the days it’s about business and what is going to bring in the most money.
“Nothing has changed for me. I hope if they don’t win this appeal that will finally be the end of it.”
Contractors have already cleared the site for development, and residents believe housing should be put there instead.
Bob Taylor, 65, of Bedford Road, said: “Nobody has any objections to them building houses on the land, but this is a residential area it’s not the place for a KFC.
“I think Laindon Holdings thought we would back off eventually, but we will continue to fight this.”
If the appeal is successful, the restaurant would create 40 part-time and 15 full-time job positions.
Councillors had hoped the location of the KFC could be moved to the Laindon Centre to boost regeneration there.
John Dornan, Tory councillor for Laindon Park, said: “I think the decision to refuse it was on solid planning grounds and I’m disappointed because KFC is more than welcome in the upcoming Laindon Centre development. Laindon is calling out for a business like this in the right place, but it needs to be part of our vision.”
John Scarola, Labour councillor for Laindon Park, added: “The reasons for objection were clear and those issues have not gone away. It’s just unbelievable that they even contemplated putting an appeal in.
“Why can’t they just find another site? When have you ever seen a KFC in a residential area? I just don’t understand it.”