Plans to redevelop an ‘eyesore’ in the centre of North Cheam which were rejected by Sutton Council are being appealed.

Home Group’s proposals to build 88 flats on the site of Victoria House, located on the corners of London Road and Malden Road, were refused by the planning committee last April.

Despite more than 1,400 people opposing the development before, the case has been taken to the Government’s Planning Inspectorate with a hearing expected for June.

Richard Johnson, who runs a community Facebook page for Worcester Park, said: “The community is obviously disappointed that a developer is putting in a planning application that appears to be growing each time.

“We have a developer that is trying to pack people in and pile high this site to the point where it’s not going to be anywhere decent to live in. The surrounding roads will be choked with all the vehicles from this site, from all the people who cannot get their cars onto it.

“This is a very key point in the location. It’s right at the crossroads, it will dominant because Victoria House is right at the top of the peak of the hill. It will dominate the area.

“Something four storeys high for Victoria House is fairly dominant, can you imagine it when it’s two and a half times as big?”

Victoria House has been empty since 2006, having been subject to a few planning applications since then.

Home Group bought the site after previous developers, Stonegate Homes, shelved proposals to build an eight-storey apartment building.

Reasons for why the development was rejected by the council's planning committee included that its height and massing would be ‘out of character' with the area, harm neighbouring amenities, and doesn’t accommodate non-car modes of transport.

He added: “What we don’t want is Victoria House to just stay. If they were serious our feeling is, in the community, the developers would have knocked it down.

"The other point is that it’s supposed to be a secure site, it isn’t. We have children getting in there very easily."

It is currently unknown when a decision will be made after the hearing next month.

A spokeswoman for the developer said: “Home Group, following an unsuccessful planning committee on 19 April 2017, lodged an appeal to the Planning Inspectorate.

“We have received confirmation that this appeal is valid and a hearing will take place in early June, which we hope is successful.”