COLCHESTER Foodbank’s bid to move to a new home will face extra scrutiny after residents raised concerns over traffic and parking.

Through donations, the foodbank has raised more than £46,000 to put down a deposit on a new headquarters, allowing it to expand operations in the town.

In August, an application was submitted to convert an old pharmacy building at Abbey Field Medical Centre, in Ypres Road.

But several residents have raised concerns about an increase in traffic in the area and the availability of parking.

The plans will now be examined by Colchester Council’s planning committee after the decision was called in by ward councillor Pauline Hazel (Con, Shrub End).

The call-in request states: “Ypres Road is narrow and suffers from heavy traffic congestion.

“The medical centre car park is always overflowing, cars park on every piece of green or pavement on both side of the road from Circular Road South.

“It is often quite hazardous to find a way through in the narrow space available. Car spaces at the application site will be inadequate for the running of the project.”

Since the call-in request was submitted the plans have been amended to a temporary two-year permission but the committee will still have the final say.

Planning officers have recommended the plans be approved subject to a number of conditions.

A report states: “The conversion of the medical reception store to a foodbank will secure the future of the building, a non-designated heritage asset.

“The proposal is not considered to have detrimental impact on air quality, residential amenity and or the character and appearance of the area.

“The highway impact of the proposals is unproven, however, it is considered a temporary use will enable the traffic implications to be monitored and traffic impacts to be addressed should an application be submitted in the future for permanent permission.”

Colchester Foodbank says the site would be visited by an average of two cars a day.

If approved the centre will be open 10am to 2pm Monday to Saturday.

Plans will be decided at a meeting of the planning committee on Thursday.