Controversial plans to build homes and a new pub by the River Thames are facing a fresh backlash from businesses concerned getting to their island will be harder.

Richmond Council wants to demolish run-down buildings on the site for 45 new homes, shops, cafés and a new pub.

It says the Diamond Jubilee Gardens on the site would be improved.

The authority plans to limit car access along the Embankment opposite Eel Pie Island using a “stopping up” order which could come into effect if planning permission is granted.

A statement with the plans says there would be “excellent access” to Eel Pie Island. 

It says part of the Embankment between Wharf Lane and the Eel Pie Island Bridge will be limited to cars for most of the day to create a priority area for pedestrians and cyclists.

It says Wharf Lane and Water Lane will become two-way vehicle routes to maintain access for nearby residents and businesses, while the Embankment could be used by cars for loading for businesses in the early morning.

But locals have raised concerns access to the island will be too difficult or dangerous under the proposals.

In a letter published on September 15, Eel Pie Island Bridge Company said: “Businesses on the island from time to time need heavy deliveries involving the use of articulated vehicles.

"It is not always possible to know in advance the type of vehicle a courier will use.

"The planning application envisages use of the Embankment by these vehicles in a controlled manner but does not give any detail of how this will work.

"The stopping up order does not acknowlegde this requirement.

“There does not seem to have been any rigorous assessment of the proposal’s practicality, its effect on the general area of central Twickenham or the safety implications.”

Local Simon Cassini added: “What we have at the moment is a working, mixed use, highly accessible and adaptable, bustling shared riverside which has evolved over many years to service the needs of the island, the town and its many visitors.

"I don’t deny it would benefit from a little TLC but this proposal – to tear it all down, build an unnecessary overpowering monolith, concrete it over, and then make access to the area at best difficult, at worst dangerous – seems like the worst possible idea…”

Locals have also raised concerns about the future of the Diamond Jubilee Gardens.

The Twickenham Riverside Trust, which has a 125-year lease on the gardens, wants the gardens to be removed from the council’s brownfield land register at the next review.

In a letter published on September 20, chair Ted Cremin wrote: “In making this application it is important for us to make it clear that our request to have the gardens removed from the [brownfield land] register should in no way be construed as a lack of willingness on the part of the trust to continue to be open to consider the reprovision of all or parts of the gardens within any scheme of improvement and partial development of Twickenham Riverside which also meets the trust’s charitable objectives of protecting, preserving and improving Twickenham riverside and its environs.”

Around 342 people have objected to the plans with other concerns including the buildings being too tall and overbearing.

But 231 people have also written in support, saying the development will regenerate the area, help local businesses and should go ahead without delay.

Local David Opperman wrote: “This is a wonderful proposal to enhance Twickenham for the enjoyment of residents like myself and tourists. I thoroughly support it.”

Richmond Council has been contacted for comment.