A council will veto the Government’s new planning laws to stop buildings in an industrial estate being demolished or turned into homes.

Redbridge Council’s cabinet voted at a meeting on September 10 to issue a special direction withdrawing permitted development rights for Hainault Business Park in Ilford.

Permitted development rights introduced on September 1 would allow developers to demolish the buildings or convert them into homes, shops or gyms without a planning application.

A report prepared for the cabinet states there are around 250 businesses in the park, employing up to 3,000 people, and that it is “second largest employment area in the borough” behind Ilford town centre.

It reads: “Hainault Business Park is very important to the borough as an employment location.

“The park has become almost fully occupied, has seen increased property values and many businesses have made general investments in their properties and buildings, with the aim of staying on the business park.”

The report states the Government’s new planning legislation threatens both business and jobs in Hainault Business Park.

It adds: “There is a need to ensure more people in Redbridge can access employment and develop their careers for the long-term.

“The Government has left local authorities with little option other than resorting to more robust means of planning control to save activities vital to local economic stability.”

Read more: Planning reforms could mean 'free for all' for Redbridge developers

The direction will not ban the demolition or conversion of buildings in Hainault Business Park but will ensure developers have to submit a planning application to the council.

The council will now consult on whether the new rights should be revoked immediately or after a year-long notice period, which would reduce the likelihood of complaints or compensation requests from building owners.

On August 7, members of the council’s planning committee criticised the Government for introducing the new planning laws.

Cllr Vanisha Solanki (Lab, Fullwell), said: “The planning process isn’t perfect but it needs control and rules otherwise you end up with poorly designed, and overdeveloped areas.

“The Government hasn't thought this through and needs to work with local authorities on what changes are required.”

Cllr Varinder Singh-Bola (Lab, Cranbrook), added: “Our local communities deserve to have a greater say in shaping the regeneration that is taking place around us and in deciding what is right for our town.

“This disgraceful relaxing of planning regulations by the Government is all about helping developers and not about in the interest of local communities.”

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