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Last Updated: Friday, 15 February 2008, 02:51 GMT
'Mega church' plans turned down
Artist's impression of the new church
The proposed site at Beam Reach is meant for industrial use
Plans to build an 8,000-seat Pentecostal church in east London at a cost of £70m have been turned down.

The Kingsway International Christian Centre (KICC) was moved from its previous Hackney premises because it was within the 2012 Olympic Park site.

Havering Council said the planned redevelopment would have caused too much congestion.

London Thames Gateway Development Corporation (LTGDC) discussed the plans on Thursday evening.

'Serious misconduct'

Graham Williamson, of the Adamsgate Action Group, which opposed the plans, said the decision was "a fantastic victory for the community".

KICC said it was forced to vacate the premises it operated from in Waterden Road, Hackney, east London, last September due to development for the 2012 Olympic Games.

It currently functions from a building in Hoe Street, Walthamstow, east London.

KICC said it has spent £1.8m on architects and town planning consultants to come up with the design.

But the proposal was turned down by Havering Council.

In a statement, the council said: "Councillors unanimously objected to the proposal of the KICC due to the inadequacy of local transport facilities and... the development would conflict with the strategic employment policy for the area and that the site would be a poor location for a use of the scale and nature proposed."

Pastor Dipo Oluyomi, CEO of KICC, said: "We are shocked to hear this news.

"What happened was unfair and not expected of people who are genuinely after the progress of the community. We will however await the formal determination of the application by LTGDC," he said.

The church would have been spread over two levels and include an office complex, a crèche, gymnasium, dance studio and a multi-storey car park.

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