The expansion of the Port of Tilbury took a step closer after planning permission was approved by Thurrock Council.

Known as Tilbury2, Port of Tilbury London Limited have plans to build a second port which will go over part of the now defunct Tilbury Power Station - which is under the process of demolition.

Although the final decision on whether construction will go ahead will come from the Secretary of State, as part of what is called a Development Consent Order, the Port must seek approval from other bodies, such as the local authority.

The building plans were presented to a Thurrock Planning Committee yesterday.

Although there was a general consensus among the committee members that the plans would have a positive effect on employment figures, they took a cautious approach to congestion issues.

Chadwell St Mary councillor, Gerard Rice, told the committee that he would like to see noise reduction measures put in place along the A1089 - the road that connects the port with the A13.

He said: "I fully support the proposals but I want environmental measures.

"I get complaints from people as far as Riverside who can hear that screeching coming from Chadwell St Mary. I get complaints about lorry drivers on that Dock Approach road who think it's fun to beep their horns at 1am.

"I want to see these noise reduction measures put in as I want to see our residents protected."

Another concern, brought up by Stanford-le-Hope West councillor, Terry Piccolo, was about the lack of parking available for lorries.

In the Council's Local Impact Report, it is estimated that there will be around 500,000 vehicles per year coming in and out of the Port after this expansion, which is double the threshold set out in the Planning Act 2008.

Mr Piccolo said: "We already have the problem on Manorway where lorries using DP world are parking along the road. If they do that along the A1089 that's going to hold up major industry."

Planning Committee Vice Chair, Steve Liddiard, also raised concerns about access to The World's End pub saying "how will people get to the only pub in Tilbury."

The motion was passed, with seven councillors supporting it and two abstaining.

The final decision is expected to be made by the Secretary of State in early 2019.