Plans to redevelop an historic east London cinema were unveiled ten years ago this week.

Developers have offered a first glimpse of what they want to build on the site of an historic cinema.

The plans are for two four-storey blocks, one behind the other, containing eight flats and a restaurant on what used to be the site of the Kinema in the High Street, Wanstead.

It was the only cinema Wanstead ever had and could cater for more than 500 movie-goers at a time, but closed in 1956 before being used as a bingo club and a snooker hall.

Four unsuccessful attempts have been made over the past two years to win permission for the building’s redevelopment, but all have been rejected for being “out of keeping” with the High Street.

The Wanstead Society has opposed all previous bids to redevelop the new building.

But spokesman Geoff Horsnell said the Society was happier with the look of the latest design.

He conceded that the white surface and sash windows were a better fit for the area than previous proposals.

But he added: “Whilst this proposal is better than the previous plans, it still needs some additional work.”

Mr Horsnell wants to see the gables of the existing building incorporated into the new design.

He also wants works access during any construction switched to the back of the building to preserve three trees at the front of the building and prevent disruption to pedestrians

Fights over the building’s future date back to at least 1961 when the cinema’s stage, screen, seating and projector room were removed.

The latest planning application quotes Brian Page, the then editor of the Wanstead Historical Society Journal, who wrote at the time: “Yet another part of old Wanstead is to disappear, but its memory and history will still remain.”

The new plans have been submitted by developer Nam Pham, whose Vietnamese restaurant would continue to operate from the new development.

Mr Horsnell, of Gloucester Road, also has concerns about amenity space at the new development.

He said: “Little is said about any amenity space within the design, contrary to the basic requirements for any new property – whether houses or flats.

“A small elevated garden seems to be the only facility in this respect.”

And he added: “It is also close to a number of Grade II listed properties.”

But Patrick Mitchell, of architects Platform Five, said: “We have worked hard to meet the valid concerns of local residents and have completely reworked the proposed street façade in terms of character and colouring to echo the appearance of the existing building.”

No date has been set for a decision on the latest application.