SHOPS and flats could be built in place of a car dealership forecourt in Southend under plans submitted to Southend Council.

William and Daniel Stilwell – the owners of Bellvue Motors, in Southchurch Road – are behind plans to build two shops and eight flats on their dealership’s forecourt.

Under the plans, Bellevue Motors would remain but a four storey building would be built on land which is currently used as a forecourt by the business.

According to the plans, two shops would be be on the ground floor of the new building with eight flats above.

It comes after a previous planning application was refused in 2022 for a three-storey building comprising of nine-self contained flats.

Matt Dent, Labour councillor responsible for the Kursaal ward, raised initial concerns.

He said: “I have already been contacted by residents who are concerned about the size of this proposed development.

“So, I do have some concerns.

“I have called it in to be decided by the development control committee.

“This isn’t the first proposal here, a previous one was rejected.

“So, I am concerned about the level of development this represents, as well as the size and impact upon the area.”

The new plans would see two one-bedroom flats, four two-bedroom flats, one two-bedroom flat and one three-bedroom flat built.

Previous plans were refused as a planning officers said the “development would harm the character and appearance of the street scene and wider area”.

In the new and revised plans, the applicant stated: “The proposed scheme has been designed to be in keeping with the neighbouring properties and the local context in terms of scale and massing.

“The first and second floor design have been designed with setbacks to reduce impact on the streetview.

“With good design, the site provides a great opportunity for mixed-use development with increased visual interest.

“This has been achieved by responding sensitively to the scale, form, and massing of the surrounding context.”