London Fields campaigners hit out at plans for housing block on Morland Estate – for a second time

A group of residents of Morland Estate, London Fields, are angry at the council's decision to sell s

A group of residents of Morland Estate, London Fields, are angry at the council's decision to sell somepublic garages. - Credit: Archant

London Fields campaigners have panned designs for a pair of large new homes on their estate for a second time – and so have independent consultants they hired.

London Fields West LLP shelved its application to build on a plot of land on the Morland Estate in November 2016 after protests from angry neighbours about its four-and-a-half storey height.

The council sold the site in London Fields West Side, not far from the lido, for £457,000 at an auction four years ago. People living on Morland had wanted it for a community garden.

After meeting with neighbours, the developers returned last month with revised proposals for a three-and-a-half storey block, though it would be one storey high facing Richmond Road.

But campaigners and Quadrant Town Planning – a firm hired by one neighbour – say it’s still too tall.

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Quadrant’s report states: “The proposed development represents overdevelopment of the site, leading to a consequential impact on [our client’s property], resulting in a loss of privacy, loss of outlook, visual dominance and loss of daylight and sunlight.”

Quadrant says the scheme would reduce neighbour sunlight by 28 per cent – leaving light levels below guidelines.

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Julian Blake, chair of the Morland Blanchard TRA, which represents 300 people, said developers met neighbours in November to discuss the plans.

“Despite minor changes,” he said, “the revised proposal remains for a building that is too dominant for a tiny site. Neighbours are set to lose privacy and light to an unacceptable level.

“The council sold off the land at auction in 2013, securing way more than the guideline price for a single dwelling.

“This has put the developer under pressure to increase its return.

“The result it seems is thatm legitimate neighbour concerns about loss of light and privacy have come second to a desire to maximise profit from the site.”

Stephen Chance, of Chance de Silva, said: “We are disappointed Morland TRA opposes our proposal. It seems some people are still angry with the council for selling the site.

“The design has been significantly amended to respond to their original concerns.

“We think the project will have very little, if any, impact on most residents of the Morland estate.”

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