A controversial planning application for more parking near Witham train station has been approved.

The plans, submitted by applicant Jason Langley, will see 16 parking spaces for private season ticket holders on a former van sales site in Easton Road.

Witham Town Council objected to the plans on the basis that the area was too congested.

Cllr Michael Lager said: “It is hopelessly congested, people have to wait and wait to turn right to come out of Easton Road to the rest of the town.

“The other issue it would be easier if the county council had granted a second access in Station Road.

“I spent ages as a county councillor with people from the highways department bringing it up to a point it could be adopted.

“The county council really must get the sign off to sort the access and get it opened up as agreed.”

But Essex County Council said it was not aware of any plans to open Station Road for car park access.

The design and access statement explained the premises is not fully useable for the commercial business because of a fire.

David Bigg, chairman of Witham and Braintree Rail Users’ Association, welcomed the plans as an improvement for commuters.

He said: “It’s only going to provide a small number of spaces, but it’s all welcome.

“Frankly we are running out of spaces. While it will only scratch the surface, at least it’s something.

“It has been used for van hire in the past and it’s pretty derelict, it will improve the appearance of the area.

“Those 16 spaces will be occupied all the time and with what we have seen we have no reason to object.”

The plan was approved at a planning meeting on November 7.