Residents have called for new homes to be built on an abandoned industrial estate which they say continues to be a hotspot for anti-social behaviour.

Homeowners in Nayling Road, Braintree, say they are desperate for the council to approve plans to build 81 homes on the nearby Broomhills Industrial Estate because it has become a “blight” on the town.

Plutus Estates is seeking full planning permission to demolish derelict buildings on the site, which is off Pods Brook Road, before building a mix of social and private housing.

The developer’s initial plans to build 107 homes on the brownfield land was refused last year but it hopes its latest bid, which was submitted six months ago, will get the approval of Braintree Council’s planning officers.

With no decision yet made on the latest plans, resident Rob Miller says frustration is growing at the apparent failure to redevelop the old industrial estate.

He said: “The blighted former Broomhills Industrial Estate site, a brownfield housing development site which could deliver over 80 new homes in the middle of Braintree, continues to cause local nuisance as it remains stuck in the planning system.

“The latest application has letters of support from residents and has seen enquiries made to the council asking when development will commence.

“We are frustrated by the lack of progress in progressing the planning application and cannot understand why a housing site allocated for residential development isn’t being proactively pushed through the planning system.

“The site is located on a main arterial route into Braintree and sets a bad first impression for many to our town – particularly whilst queuing in rush hour traffic.

“The proposal for the site is an opportunity to solve a very real problem for Braintree. For the sake of local residents in the area, I hope the council concurs.”

Despite the support for the application, two letters objecting to the proposals have been submitted to the council, with concerns focusing on overdevelopment of the site and increased traffic.

Were the scheme to get the go ahead, the land would need to be decontaminated before building work could begin. The Environment Agency is satisfied the site could be cleared properly and has raised no objections.

A spokesman for Braintree Council said: "We have been liaising with the developer about the layout, design and viability of the development since the submission of the application.

"We would like the site to come forward for redevelopment, however we need to ensure that the scheme is high quality and complies with planning policy.

"The application will need to go to planning committee for the final decision, and at this stage we cannot confirm when this will be as discussions are ongoing with the developer."