CONCERNS have been raised over plans for an 80-home development in Horndon-on-the-Hill that also includes the building of a hospice.

Housing could be built on land at Malgraves Farm on Lower Dunton Road in Horndon.

The proposals have been included in a large consultation on future developments in the borough.

The plans are part of an “enabling housing development” which would incorporate a hospice building.

Council development policy means consideration would be given to a housing development of up to 80 dwellings on green belt land, if a hospice is provided as part of the plans.

This is because the council “considers the great need for hospice accommodation within Thurrock” and so developments of this type “amount to very special circumstances”.

But plans to place the development on green belt land in Horndon, which Langdon Hills Golf Club owner Eddie Wright is understood to be behind, have caused disappointment among Horndon residents, while ward councillor Sue Little dubbed the idea “horrendous”.

Jane Barry, the chairman of the Horndon Society Community Forum, has said it would be a great shame for houses to be built on this land.

She said: “We have had a visit from officers working on this and everyone is very negative about the idea.

“This is a rural area with no bus services. Thurrock needs a hospice but this isn’t the right place.

“Malgraves Farm is a beautiful open space with great views. There aren’t many places like that in the borough.”

Cllr Little said: “The proposal for 80 new homes and a hospice in the village of Horndon is a concern.

“I am committed to protecting the green belt in Thurrock, and ensuring our small villages keep their traditional character. Thurrock needs a hospice, but we need to decide as a borough where the best place for it is.

“If you look at how Lower Dunton Road is, it would be horrendous. It’s a large part of our green belt.

“I know we need houses and the council has to supply them, I just think they need to look at a different location.”