RESIDENTS want more time to give their views on plans to build 4,000 new homes in Castle Point after it is claimed hundreds of people didn’t get feedback forms.
Castle Point Council’s controversial proposal to build the homes by 2031 was explained in a leaflet which was meant to be sent to all homes in the borough.
However, hundreds of homes didn’t receive the leaflet or the attached questionnaire asking for feedback on the plans.
Calls have now been made to extend the consultation beyond the March 21 deadline.
Julia Burch, 46, of Badgers Way, Thundersley said she thought the council had no choice but to extend the consultation period.
She said: “There are so many people in the borough are without this vital document that will have a huge say in our future and the future of Castle Point itself. A lot of people still don’t know the finer details of what the council is proposing and they must have a say for the council to receive a fair representation.
It is incredibly frustrating.”
Ms Burch added the Regeneration Shops, in the Knightswick Centre, Canvey and Hadleigh High Street, needed to be open in the evenings so people working in the day could visit.
The shops, which cost £60,000 a year to run, close at 4pm on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and 1pm on Saturdays, meaning some residents are unable to visit.
She added: “I would love to spend an evening perusing the maps, but it is just not possible.”
Patricia Mayes, 40, of Hilltop Avenue, Benfleet said more people needed to attend the meetings to have a say on the plan. Only 15 people attended Monday’s Thundersley ward meeting, seven of who were councillors or council officers.
She said: “This is a hugely important time and people must have their say. If they don’t, they cannot criticise it when plans are passed.”
Steve Rogers, Head of Regeneration and Neighbourhoods at Castle Point Council, said the authority would not be extending the consultation period.
He said: “This isn’t a referendum or a vote, it is a consultation. Anyone can respond and I would encourage anyone, regardless of their age, to come into the council offices or a regeneration shop or look online to take part. This is inclusive, not exclusive.
“We are concerned at the number of people who haven’t received a leaflet and this is something we have taken up with Royal Mail. Anyone who does not have the relevant information should contact the council and we will ensure it is sent to them.”
For more information, visit castlepoint.