The owners of the Southend independent toy shop, Argosy Toys are going head to head with developers and their proposal to build a block of nine flats that ‘will obscure the shop’s popular advertising mural wall.’
Owner of the store have stated that should the plans by RG Airspace Developments Limited go ahead, the build next door to the longstanding toy shop will cover the vibrant wall that Argosy Toys’ staff say ‘draws in plenty of customers.’
Speaking to the local daily newspaper, The Echo, staff member Fionna Morgan, said: “The building they want to demolish has a bit of history and was used as a petrol station in the war. They want to build right up to being flush with our shop front.
“We are only two storeys but they want to build four storeys and it will just dwarf us and we will be lost.”
Argosy Toys has stood proudly in its spot along London Road, Westcliff for the past 70 years, utilising its wall as an advertising space that captures local attention through its large scale murals. The shop is concerned that such traction will be lost if the development goes ahead.
A spokesperson for APS Designs Associated Limited, acting as agent for the developer, said: “We fail to see how this would be detrimental to the business. At the moment the shop is attached to part of a corner which is empty and has failed on numerous occassions to find any commercial value.
“The site is one of many along the London Road which could be part of the regeneration, particularly on this side of the road. New developments are being agreed all the way along from Chalkwell park through to Palace Theatre.
“This would be another expample of that regeneration.”