A PUB, shops and a market could all be wiped out to make way for 492 flats in Basildon’s town centre.

A huge 17-storey building could replace the Moon on the Square pub, Greggs and a Subway on Market Square, which would be demolished as part of plans submitted by developer Orwell Limited.

The Lloyds Bank and Mallard Jewellers would also go if the plans are given the green light.

It was also revealed to the Echo a massive 28-storey block of flats is being discussed to replace the former Marks and Spencer site on Town Square.

This would be the tallest building in Basildon if the application is submitted.

This comes as developers ramp up investment in the town.

The application for almost 500 flats has sent shockwaves through businesses and Basildon Council, with Gavin Callaghan, leader of the council, confirming the market in Market Square is set to move onto Town Square.

Mr Callaghan said: “Half a billion pounds is coming to Basildon through investors in the private sector. That wasn’t the case a few months ago.

"It won’t just be flats. There will be a park as part of the complex, as well as retailers and shops. Cafes and coffee shops will be in there too.

“We want to protect our shops, but the square is half empty at the moment and not fit for purpose.

“The market is dying on it’s a**e where it is now. The Town Square is the perfect place for it.

“The block will need a full rebuild.”

The leader also revealed discussions had been held with NHS chiefs to use the ground floor of the tower block for services, to relieve pressure on Basildon Hospital.

He added: “We’ve had 20 years of stagnation in Basildon.

“It will be on the businesses to make sure their shop fronts are enticing. We need more bars and restaurants in the town centre too.

“Investors are now using their back pockets to benefit Basildon. We will likely see more applications submitted for the next four corners of Basildon in the next six months.”

The Towngate theatre also plans to move to East Walk, as well as the huge 5,000 seater stadium plan to replace the Westgate shopping centre.

If approved, construction would commence in January 2021.

Wetherspoons, Greggs, and Subway were contacted for comment.