HOUSES are springing up on a former industrial site that was notorious for anti-social behaviour.

Builders have begun to transform a large plot of land next to Brockenhurst railway station - one of the gateways to the New Forest National Park.

The site was previously occupied by the Redmayne Engineering Works, which moved to larger premises in Lymington nine years ago.

In 2019 the derelict buildings were the scene of a fire which is thought to have been started deliberately.

Three years ago the New Forest National Park Authority (NPA) approved plans to build nine homes and several offices on the site.

Now Weston Investments Ltd is seeking consent to delete the commercial element of the scheme.

The latest application has sparked several letters of objection - even though work on the houses has already started.

People living near the site say the proposed development will harm their privacy as well as creating extra traffic problems in the area.

Objectors include Latchmoor Court Residents' Association, which cites an "inevitable increase" in the number of vehicles using Station Approach.

But the NPA has also received several letters from people supporting the application.

One Brockenhurst resident says: "The site has attracted dangerous levels of anti-social behaviour on countless occasions, which must have caused great disturbance to neighbours.

"It's a well balanced, well designed and attractive residential scheme. It will provide much-needed family housing in Brockenhurst."

Another villager adds: "It's imperative to build new homes to meet increasing demand. Far better to build within the curtilage of New Forest towns and villages than on the edge."

The site is clearly visible to passengers on trains passing through the station.

One commuter says: "It's been an eyesore for a long time. Each time I travel I think about the awful approach for visitors to this pretty village."

The Friends of Brockenhurst Station group is also supporting the proposal, saying the vacant Redmayne buildings resulted in vagrancy and anti-social behaviour.

In 2015 McCarthy & Stone submitted an application to redevelop the site by building 24 apartments for older residents.

The proposal was rejected by the NPA - largely on the grounds that it would result in the loss of employment site.