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Today, speaking for the first time about the row, developer John Morley - who himself lives in the fashionable seaside town, was apologetic.

Locals claim the new site is like having the famous passenger ship parked at the end of their gardens

Locals claim the new site is like having the famous passenger ship parked at the end of their gardens

He told MailOnline: ‘We are sorry. There have been mistakes but we are working to fix them.'

Mr Morley, 52, of Whitstable Nest, who are responsible for the build, said his own firm is considering taking legal action against those responsible

Mr Morley said he was now working with the planning department and new architects to make changes which he hopes will placate neighbours.

He appealed to the residents to be patient.

He said: ‘When we bought the building a year and a half ago it was very run down. It was a drug den, with over 200 rats and 50 pigeons. The building is here now, we made a mistake but we followed professional advice.

‘It’s going to cost me a quarter of a million pounds, but we are saying sorry, and we want to fix it. I accept that.’ 

‘We knew we didn’t have planning permission, but were assured it was all under control so we cracked on.

‘After the council got in touch with us we tried to get in touch with those involved but they have disappeared completely. I have called, emailed and sent registered letters. We are now going down the legal route.’

Mr Morley said he has now appointed a new team of architects and is looking into ways to resolve the situation. But he maintains he had not had any complaints personally.

He added: ‘As a business we are not contesting anything. We are not saying we are bigger than anyone, we are not claiming to live in an ivory tower and telling people to go away. We are saying “Oh my god, we are in this situation, and did not realise this was all going wrong”.’

He said he was more than willing to sit down with residents to ‘sort it all out’.


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The council wont have the nerve to force them to actually demolish it because they know that they'll just appeal any such decision and it'll cost the council £250k in legal fees to fight it and ultimately just be allowed.

Frankly, I can't see how a brick facade or a white rendered facade makes much difference personally to the value of the homes immediately behind it.

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