Popular Cheam businesses are facing closure as plans to demolish their rented properties, replacing them with a block of flats go to consultation.

The proposals would see a chemist, off-licence and estate agents on Upper Mulgrave Road replaced with a four-storey building containing ten flats with new commercial units at ground level.

Objecting to the planning application, residents say the loss of important retail services will make life difficult for the community and that the new flats are unlikely to be affordable to people from the area.

Mrs Angela Firth, of nearby Burdon Lane, said: “These (businesses) are ideally located for pedestrians and are an important facility for the nearby residents, particularly the elderly and less mobile.

“Although there is a proposal to include new retail units at ground level below the flats proposed, the time taken to build would make it unlikely that the existing businesses could return and there is no certainty that the units would be refilled.

“This is at a time when the High Street is under unprecedented pressure for survival and support is needed to retain high streets.

“The proposed flats do not appear to meet the affordability criteria so will not help alleviate the shortage of affordable residential developments or fulfill the aims of the local and greater London plan for affordable residential developments.”

The application states 9-17 Upper Mulgrave Road will be demolished, affecting Mulgrave Road Pharmacy, Cheam Kandies off-licence and a branch of Capital estates.

Further concerns have been raised whether the road will be able to cope with the parking pressures a residential development will bring.

Mr Geoff Land said: : “As a local business, we see the problems associated with the lack of car parking spaces in the area, leading to cars parked indefinitely in restricted bays.

“These vehicles are moved at around 11am when the parking enforcement teams arrive, and reappear a short after the attendants leave.

“A further issue is that vehicles are often illegally parked in private car parks, including our own, and we do not have any powers to prevent this. I believe this development will only exaccerbate those problems.”

Adi Rabi, 19, who helps his parents run Kandies, said: “We’ve been here in Cheam for 15 years, working day in, day out.

“We’ve put blood, sweat and tears into this.”

The public have until July 20 to comment on the application.

To view the application visit: https://planningregister.sutton.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=PS0JSQKCLNM00