A LONG-STANDING Hockley industrial estate could be replaced by a new business park and homes as a developer prepares to unveil plans to the public.

Developer Govey Homes is behind a project to replace the Foundry industrial estate, off Station Approach, after purchasing the site back in 2022.

Ronny Billington, 47, is saddened that his “second home”, where his tyre service Foundry Tyres has been since 1995, could be no more under the new plans.

Eileen Gadsdon, Hockley ward Conservative councillor, claimed some businesses there “will be relocated or remain” but plans will be finalised at next Wednesday’s public consultation.

The proposals will be published online next Tuesday before an event with residents is held on Wednesday.

Mr Billington said: “The trouble we’ve got in Hockley is we’ve got nowhere to move with the traffic and if this development happens, it’s going to be a lot worse.

“If a new location can be found for me, then it’s OK but at the same time, I’ll be gutted because the Foundry has been my second home, and I want it to stay how it is.

“However, we’ve got to go with the flow, and I’ll be at the consultation next Wednesday to look at the plans.”

Ms Gadsdon admitted “something needs to be done” at the industrial estate to “bring it back to life”.

She said: “Most of the units are empty and only a small handful are in use, such as Foundry Tyres, Hockley Motor Services and Silver Dragons Martial Arts Studio.

“I attended a meeting a few weeks ago with other councillors and the developers, and there’s plans of a mix of apartments, over 55 apartments and a mix of commercial space, such as some there now either being relocated or remaining.

“The plans are still being worked on, but I will keep an open mind and encourage residents to go along and have their say.”

The Echo contacted Govey Homes for a comment and a spokesman said the plans are “still being drawn up”.

Wednesday’s consultation is running from 3pm to 8pm at Kilnfield House, at the industrial estate.