FRESH plans to bulldoze a landmark Leigh home and build flats could win Southend Council’s backing next week.

Previous plans to knock down 135 Marine Parade and replace it with a three-storey building were thrown out by Southend Council’s development control committee and dismissed on appeal last year over fears the building would be overbearing.

Residents and councillors joined forces to oppose the scheme, felt to be out of keeping with other homes on Marine Parade.

Applicants Paul Miller and Peter Hills have submitted new plans for a two-storey development with accommodation in the roof space to provide four, two-bedroom flats, with eight parking spaces.

The width of the new building has decreased, the height reduced and the front of the building has been moved back by one metre but the depth and the proportions of the roof have increased.

The council received 28 letters of representation. Residents who lodged objections include those who thought the proposal was an overdevelopment of the site and “detrimental to the street scene”.

Some felt it out of character and “incongruous” with the traditional character of Marine Parade.

Ten of the letters were submitted in support of the latest application with one resident saying it was the “best option/most acceptable so far”. Another felt the design was “more palatable than previous proposals and not overbearing”.

Bernard Arscott, chairman of Leigh Town Council, said: “It’s a prominent location. It sounds like it’s an improvement on what has previously been contemplated however, it’s still the loss of a building with a lot of character that is very prominent. It seems a shame to be losing a large family home for smaller flats.”

Recommending the proposal be approved, planning officers said: “The proposed development would be acceptable and compliant with the objectives of the relevant development plan policies and guidance.

“The replacement of the existing dwelling with four flats is acceptable in principle with the sizes, layouts and external amenity space providing satisfactory standards of accommodation. The proposal would have an acceptable impact on the amenities of neighbouring occupiers and the character and appearance of the application site and street scene.”

The committee will consider the plans on Wednesday.