Tower blocks demolition and new homes agreed for Dagenham

Goresbrook Village Estate tower blocks in Dagenham are to be demolished and replaced by new homes

Goresbrook Village Estate tower blocks in Dagenham are to be demolished and replaced by new homes - Credit: Archant

Plans to demolish three 16-storey tower blocks and build 149 new homes in Dagenham have been agreed.

Barking and Dagenham Council granted planning permission for the scheme on the site of the Goresbrook Village Estate in Dagenham.

The demolition and rebuild later this year is part of the council’s estate renewal plans. Countryside Properties will start construction work on the new homes in the summer with the first being ready around March 2015.

Life on the estate was highligted in Channel 4’s 2010 reality documentary called Tower Block of Commons. It saw MP Mark Oaten live on the deprived estate where he was confronted with homophobic abuse from youths.

Cllr Phil Waker, council Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “Given its position next to the A13 Goresbrook Village is one of the best known housing estates in Barking and Dagenham. However, the three blocks have reached the end of their useful life. They had got to a stage where the cost of renovating and improving them was so high that it was better to demolish and rebuild with new housing.”

There will be 108 houses and 41 flats built on the site - 97 three bedroom houses, nine four bedroom houses, two five bedroom houses, 33 one bedroom flats and eight two bedroom flats.

Ninety eight of the properties will be for social rent, with 51 sold privately. There will also be a retail unit and 154 parking spaces.

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The development will be confined to the existing boundary of the estate, car park and grounds, and will not encroach onto the neighbouring Castle Green park.

Speaking about his time on the estate, Mr Oaten said: “What I found difficult to cope with was the depressingness, the miserable side of living in a tower block. That’s what got me down. But I didn’t encounter hostility. Bemusement about us, yes. And I didn’t feel threatened, but personally I found it difficult at times, and there were a couple of occasions when I wanted to jack it in.”

Barking and Dagenham Council is re-developing four estates. The others are Leys and Althorne Way in Dagenham and Gascoigne in Barking.

The council has also built 146 family sized council houses and is building 477 homes for affordable rent in William Street Quarter and Eastern End of Thames View, 134 affordable rent properties in Abbey Road, Barking, and 38 bungalows at Wood Lane and The Lawns, Dagenham, and more is planned.