Call for action over fire-damaged building in Woodford Green

East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Iain Duncan Smith with residents calling for a derelict building to be brought back into use Iain Duncan Smith with residents calling for a derelict building to be brought back into use

There are calls for a store left derelict for six months after a fire to be brought back into use.

The roof of the Londis store in Shenfield Road, Woodford Green, was completely destroyed in the blaze in July caused by an electrical fault.

The tarpaulin covering scaffolding erected to support the three-storey building, which is owned by Dinesh Patel, has been ripped by strong winds and recently wrapped around a telephone wire.

Brenda Tucker-Lowell, 66, Landscape Road, says the building is an eyesore which is an affront to community pride.

She said: “The flat above the shop caught fire last year and nothing has been done about it. We take pride in our community and this store is damaging that.

“It is a real safety hazard, children are walking past it, and with the weather as bad as it is, the scaffolding could cause an accident. It is a shame this community asset and resource has been derelict for so long.”

Woodford Green MP Iain Duncan-Smith met with residents to discuss the issue today and called on Redbridge Council to act.

He said: "I was told by the council last year that they were going to get the problem sorted but nothing has been done.

"I will be sending a letter to the council about this to make sure they see to the issue.

"Visiting the site, you can see it is a real eye sore and could potentially be dangerous.

"Residents started a campaign recently and after speaking with them, we hope action is taken as soon as possible.”

Joanne McSweeney, 43, Horn Lane, said: “I walk past here every day and it is a really horrible sight. One of the worse things about it is the noise. I live very near to it and all you can hear is the plastic wrapping flapping in the wind.”

The Guardian is awaiting comment from the council and has been unable to contact Mr Patel.

 

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