IT towers over tree-tops and rises above the roofs of nearby houses, but this isn’t a new block of flats – it’s a 30ft-high sports cage.
They had no idea the cage was coming, even through it had been part of the old Furtherwick Park School which was demolished to make way for the new Castle View building.
Residents in neighbouring Ash Road and Bramble Road claim it dwarfs their bungalows, and said workmen had made the issue even worse by cutting back trees surrounding the site, making the metal structure impossible to ignore.
Martin Kingsland, 51, of Ash Road, Canvey, said: “It is so overbearing.
“All the bungalows around here are single storey, and it just seems like no one stopped to think how this would look, overshadowing all of them.
“I have a balcony that overlooks the grounds, and my view has been completely ruined by this.
“I used to have a lovely view of Hadleigh Castle – now it is blocked by this huge cage, which looks like one of those horrendous oil storage plants.”
Daniel Lee, 31, of Bramble Road, Canvey, said: “Every time I look out of my window, there it is.
“It is such an eyesore. I can close my blinds, but that’s not the point, is it?
“What makes it worse, is the trees that were shielding it were cut back, making it even more obvious.
“You just wonder what on earth they were thinking when they came up with this idea.”
Brian Wood, UK Independent Party county councillor for Canvey East ward, will be raising objections to the sports cage on behalf of residents.
He said: “Residents should not have to be subjected to this when it could be placed anywhere on the rest of the field.
“Imagine waking up every morning, opening up your curtains and seeing that – it is just not acceptable.”
“To make matters worse, the cage doesn’t officially have planning permission yet.
“Its legitimacy will be decided by Essex County Council, which also put in the application as it is for a school site under their control.”
A county council spokesman said: “We are unable to comment on specific cases which are currently going through the planning process.
“A developer may decide to submit a retrospective planning application to retain development which has already been built.
“The planning application referred to is yet to be decided, as all comments received need to be taken into consideration before a decision is made.”
Castle View School declined to comment.