Bromley residents are considering selling their homes after a Premier League football club academy has thrown the area into "chaos".

Crystal Palace Football Club (CPFC) Academy sits on Copers Cope Road in Beckenham, having operated on the site on 2012 and with the facility seeing a major redevelopment in 2020.

Stephanie Sfakianos, 66, has lived on Copers Cope Road with her husband for over 30 years.

She said that since the redeveloped academy opened, traffic on the street has become a ‘disaster’ and cars remain stationary for prolonged periods of time on match and training days.

Ms Sfakianos told the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS): “For 15 minutes, nobody moves.

News Shopper: The Crystal Palace Football Club Academy is based on Copers Cope Road in Beckenham. Permission for use by all LDRS partners. Credit: Joe Coughlan

"You can imagine what the environmental impact of that is with cars up and down the road with their engines running.”

The academy sent an application to Bromley Council last May for retrospective permission to install a fuel tank and chimney for under pitch heating on the grounds.

The application follows a previously rejected application for the fuel tank in 2021.

Ms Sfakianos said: “I actually have a little studio at the bottom of my garden and I would be very reluctant to use it while the tank is running because the noise and smell is quite overpowering.”

An acoustic impact assessment from Hawkins Environmental on the under pitch heating system said the feature is not anticipated to be used between late spring and early autumn.

It said that nearby residents are assumed not to have their windows open or be using their private external amenity areas in cooler weather when the plant would be in operation.

An air quality assessment also said the level of nitrogen oxide emissions from the plant was less than the building emission benchmark, and called the development ‘air quality neutral’.

News Shopper: The chimney can be seen from Ms Sfakionos\' garden. Permission for use by all LDRS partners. Credit: Joe Coughlan

It said the system would be in operation at full power for 18 hours a day for about 10 days a year, and at 30per cent power for a further 20 days a year.

The resident said she has not yet seen a workable solution to the problems from the club, and feels there has been no openness or honesty directed towards residents.

She said her family are worried about how the issues may escalate by further use after noting a new application for four new floodlights on the site that are over 20 metres tall.

News Shopper: The flue from the sports ground in use, as seen from Ms Sfakianos\' home. Permission for use by all LDRS partners. Credit: Stephanie Sfakianos

Ms Sfakianos said: “There has been a busy sporting facility here since we moved in. CPFC are the only users of the facility that have led to this degree of chaos.”

She added: “It’s not that the neighbourhood doesn’t want a sports facility here. We are extremely comfortable with the principle.

"But the situation with the traffic has not been managed, and I think we don’t have any confidence at all that we have a clear and honest picture of how bad the traffic situation could potentially get if they started playing lots more matches here.”

A CPFC spokesperson told the LDRS that the operations and aesthetics of the site had improved drastically since the club’s £30m investment.

They said the site included 24 hour security which benefitted all neighbours and every attendee of the grounds was checked in and out.

They said: “It is now an elite Academy that cares for more than 200 local young people, with many also receiving education on site alongside their football commitments – and all players benefitting from life skills and development programmes.

"It also houses the club’s Women’s team, and has significant local community and charitable usage via the Palace for Life Foundation – often with hard to reach, disadvantaged young people.”

They added: “It is not a public ‘sports club’ but has a very tightly controlled and managed set of attendees.”

Another resident, who wished to remain anonymous, has lived on Copers Cope Road with their family for 17 years.

She said before CPFC took over the site, there was a gym, children’s play centre and set of bookable football pitches on the grounds, but that ‘continual traffic jams’ has changed the whole area since.

The local told the LDRS: “Occasionally people would park across my drive once every six months. It happens daily now.”

They added: “We get disturbed quite regularly at three in the morning from people returning from away matches… Lights in our bedroom. Noise from the cars or, if they’re younger, it’s the parents waiting to pick them up, so the cars are idling cars outside.”

The local said neighbours commissioned an independent traffic survey six months ago which was sent to CPFC and Bromley Council.

They said they have not seen any attempts to resolve the issues despite flagging the problem to the council through emails, phone calls and attending planning meetings.

They said: “I myself had to pay to have trellis put up because of the total lack of privacy to the point where they can look into our kitchen and our garden. I’ve had friends come round and they’ve been told by the security staff that I’m not in. My house was actually on the market, that’s how bad it got. It’s really affected us all.”

They added: “[The club] won’t take ownership of any of the problems. They said the road problems are not caused by them.

"I’ve got someone blocking my drive now. It’s unbelievably badly run and could be so much better with just a few simple changes.”

A CPFC spokesperson told the LDRS that the area in and around the site has always been a hub for sport, with Kent County Cricket Club also nearby.

They said CPFC had recently arranged for additional, off-site parking for parents of young players at Kent Cricket to reduce traffic outside the site.

They said: “But of course, we recognise that there are some operational issues – particularly around traffic and entry to the site, which we have made positive improvements to and are committed to improving further. We also wish to continue our regular, positive interactions and engagement with our immediate neighbours.”

They added: “We also repeatedly stress to guests the importance of respecting our local neighbours when arriving at and leaving the site – and we will continue to do so. We are also creating a dedicated coach park and drop off area which will be active later this year, which will reduce the impact to the road too. And we are supportive of proposals to reduce the speed restriction to 20mph to improve road safety.”

Bromley Council was approached for comment, but had not responded at the time of publication.