A developer has lodged a further planning application to demolish houses owned by people opposed to his plan to build a block of flats.

Lee Jose, of LJ Construction, has been trying for five years to gain permission for the four-storey development in Bedford Road, South Woodford, but repeated applications have been turned down by Redbridge council.

The planning committee had turned down the development, which involved knocking down existing buildings, because it was out of keeping with the area.

Mr Jose applied to demolish two neighbouring houses and build flats, despite not owning them.

The application was withdrawn by Mr Jose last month but he has lodged another plan to knock down the houses, adding in plans for parking and access onto Lansdowne Road. 

Anyone can apply for planning permission for any site in principle, and it was believed Mr Jose was attempting to set a precedent, enabling him to press ahead with his original plan.

Sue Brown, 49, who lives in one of the houses, said: “We are all very disappointed that we have to start all over again. 

"We are upset and urge people to write to the council objecting to this as none of the previous objections are carried over to this one.

"This is unfair, we want to live in our houses in peace and to have this over our heads is very stressful."

Mr Jose could not be contacted.