Anger was felt at a planning meeting on the 16 of July, as members agreed to allow the application to build 239 new homes in Rainham.
The 155 private flats and 84 social housing flats are going to be built on New Road, next to the Rainham Steel plant.
Richard Carr the Managing Director of Rainham Steel has been objecting to this planning application from the very beginning as he fears his business that generates £120 million a year, will have no protection from future noise complaints due to the proximity of the proposed new homes.
Mr Carr told the Havering Daily: “I want to publicly thank those members of the committee who had the intellect and courage to speak out on the need to protect our business and the need to ensure that residential development is suitable for people to live in.
“Equally, I want to record my absolute disappointment in the four conservative members who voted in favour of the application. I was actually embarrassed for them because I could see that they were uncomfortable in voting this through.
“Under pressure from us, the Councils Public Protection Officer has now fully acknowledged that noise will be a major problem for the scheme so much so that he has insisted that no windows or balconies can be installed on the southern elevations which face our operation. This is in addition to the requirement for the properties to be highly insulated sealed boxes with mechanical ventilation and air conditioning just so that future residents can avoid the need to open their windows. He has also confirmed his concerns over the ability to provide useable communal and outside space.
“One Conservative member actually spoke to acknowledge the importance of our business and the need to protect employment and then still voted for the scheme!
“The evidence against this scheme is now overwhelming and it was plainly obvious that all of the Conservative members voted as instructed by the leader. I met with the leader recently and it became very clear to me that he considers our business as collateral damage for what he thinks is the greater good of meeting residential targets. I told him that if this gets through I will place adverts in the papers and hoardings along the boundary to the scheme warning people not to buy or occupy the flats because they will be disturbed during the day and woken during the night by the noise from our site.
“The planning meeting was a sham. Damian White and his Conservative planning committee members may not realise it but from the outside it is crystal clear what is happening and it’s a real shame that democracy can be manipulated in this way.”
Councillor Graham Williamson who objected to the planning application told the Havering Daily: “I appreciate that we are under unfair pressure from the Mayor of London and Government to build on any spare piece of land in Havering but sometimes we are making poor choices. This particular application on Rainham New Road backs onto the Rainham Steel site. The latter generates a great deal of noise and has 24/7 operating rights. The developers (including our Council) are suggesting that if the occupants don’t have opening windows they won’t hear the noise”.
He added “I am skeptical but even if it is true (and assuming they don’t ever walk to the rear of the properties) they are sub-standard living conditions for residents. There is also the likelihood of future resident’s complaints leading to restrictions being imposed on Rainham Steel, a long standing employer in my ward. All in all an unsatisfactory situation and heads must be banged together to find a solution.”