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Tears and fears over prospect of student influx into Kingston Vale
Women in tears and angry residents are protesting against the development of a massive student development in Kingston Vale.
The proposal to erect 133 flats for students has met a campaign against since it was submitted on June 6.
The proposal, submitted by AK Property Investments, involves demolishing the bungalow at 1a Robin Hood Lane, and building a multi-storey block with parking spaces.
A doorstep survey conducted by the Kingston Vale Residents’ Association indicated unanimous opposition.
Gordon Foster, chairman of the KVRA, said: “The residents are up in arms about it. I’ve had ladies in tears about it. We have had a considerable amount of calls and a couple of letters, all concerned that it would be a catastrophe for the area.”
Coun Patrick Codd, co-chairman of the Maldens and Coombe planning sub-committee, said: “I have not known such anger in nearly 20 years, not just in Kingston but in my ward.”
He added: “The council hasn't brought this proposal forward, but, nonetheless, residents feel let down.”
John Foley, of Ullswater Crescent, said: “The facilities here have declined over the years. There used to be two pubs but both have been sold off for housing and we’ve lost those amenities. Where would the students go?”
The Duke of Cambridge pub was demolished in 2001 without planning permission, after a four-month long campaign to save it. The Vale’s only other pub, the Robin Hood, was also later converted.
Mr Foley said: “What’s happened is that people have not got a lot of confidence in planning in the area. Developers seem to be able to do what they want.”
James Lloyd of AK Property Investments said: “We’re not going to please everybody, but we have submitted the application for a development that is safe, secure and managed, and that will fit comfortably in the Vale."
The committee’s decision is expected on December 17.
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