Residents in Stoneleigh are continuing to express their concerns over plans for a part-six, part-seven-storey tower block of flats they say is out of character with the rest of the town.

In a letter sent to the developers behind the proposals, and seen by the Comet on Monday (February 24), a resident opposing the plans press them and the council on a series of questions about the proposals.

Planning documents available on the Epsom and Ewell Borough Council (EEBC) website show the proposals aim to build a seven-storey block of flats after demolishing the existing buildings at 7 Station Approach in Stoneleigh, just next to the station.

As the Comet previously reported, hundreds of residents in the area have voiced their concerns for the plans — so far, over 590 residents used comments on EEBC's planning website to voice their opposition.

Eight months after the plans were submitted to EEBC for approval, residents have not let up in their campaign to challenge the plans.

"The original design attempts were not in keeping with the look and size of local housing and certainly not in keeping with either EEBC policies or later EEBC design principals," the letter reads.

The subsequent redesign referenced in the letter was "not critical to the needs of the residents," the author says.

Their concerns mirrored those of others opposing the plans via the EEBC website, like Jean Jones who said the plans were "entirely out of character for the area as this is a residential area mainly houses and a seven storey building would stand out like a sore thumb".

Worcester Park resident Joanne Buckler meanwhile described the proposed tower block as a "monstrosity" that was "totally unnecessary and out of keeping with the local housing."

"Existing infrastructure would be compromised with this many people moving into such a small footprint," she said.

Responding to a request from the Comet, a spokesperson for EEBC underlined the fact that, as the development was a private one — proposed by developers Woolbro Group for privately-owned land — they were legally obligated to consider it and had not yet had a direct impact on shape of the plans themselves.

"A planning application has been submitted and the council is legally obliged to process the application.

"When the planning team have evaluated all the information and evidence, including all the issues highlighted in the letter and statutory requirements, they will recommend to elected councillors on the planning committee whether the planning application should be allowed," the spokesperson said.

"This is private land and the land owner is exploring their options – the council is following the national statutory process," they added.

In the letter regarding the development, the author warns that residents have "set up a neighbourhood forum to protect it from developers".

EEBC said that this process was in fact ongoing and had not yet been confirmed.

That would require more scrutiny as to whether it reflected most residents' wishes:

"A group of residents has applied for this formal status and the council now has to follow set procedure, including a local consultation (launched today), to ascertain if this is what the community, as a whole, wishes," a spokesperson for EEBC said.