CONTROVERSIAL plans to build on Canvey’s Dutch Village have been thrown out at appeal...bringing an end to years of concern.

The historic site has been subject to a host of applications in recent years, centring on plans for 275 homes before focus switched to a set of stables.

The homes plan, submitted in 2017, was withdrawn, while two subsequent applications to build a set of stables were both rejected by Castle Point Council.

The second rejection, in February this year, saw developers, Persimmon Homes, lodge an appeal with the planning inspectorate in a bid to push through the plans.

But the appeal has been dismissed, with an inspector raising major concerns over inappropriate green belt development and the site being a flood risk.

The inspector’s report concluded: “In considering the substantial weight given to the green belt, to my mind, the benefits outlined do not clearly outweigh the harm to the green belt.

“Therefore, I find that the other considerations in this case do not clearly outweigh the harm that I have identified.

“Consequently, the very special circumstances necessary to justify the development do not exist and the proposal would conflict with the framework.”

Canvey’s Dutch Village refers to the land behind two tiny Dutch cottages which are preserved, from when 200 Dutch immigrants took control of the island in the early 17th century.

One is still inhabited while the other is preserved as a museum.

The plans submitted by Persimmon Homes included 275 homes, as well as retail space, while the later plan consisted of several stables.

Resident Jeffrey Hurst, 64, added: “Hopefully this is a sign of things to come and our open space is continuously protected.

“The Dutch Village has so much history; it pre-dates all of us by a long way so I don’t think we should build anything on it, especially if it could turn into hundreds of homes down the line.”

The appeal also stated that there is no clear need for stables and pointed to a national decrease in horse riding.