Locals are objecting to the possibility of a supermarket opening a new store in Gospel Oak.

A licencing application has been submitted by lawyers Winckworth Sherwood (WS), acting for Sainsbury's, to allow for the sale of alcohol between 8am and 11pm at a site within Spectrum House, in Gordon House Road.

The building sits within the Dartmouth Park Conservation Area.

A licencing meeting has been scheduled for August 3, which is the first locals say they heard about the potential store opening.

Jessica Jacobs, who lives in Gospel Oak, said: "We had no clue this was happening. I get planning alerts for my nearby area and nothing came up."

Planning permission was given by Camden Council in May for an application relating to Unit 6 and part of Unit 5 at Spectrum House.

A decision notice said the proposal "seeks to make alterations to the front elevation at ground floor level including the replacement of a window with an entrance door and erection of signage associated with the use as a supermarket".

But Winckworth said no planning application is needed for a "change of use".

More than 25 objections have been lodged but as it is a licencing issue, responses can only relate to strict criteria including public safety and nuisance.

One neighbour said plans to sell alcohol "would exacerbate the already significant disorderly behaviour at all hours, but especially late into the evening".

They added: "It would change the nature of actually a relatively quiet residential street, apart from daytime school rush, that has no other shops on the road." 

They said many living spaces face onto the road where "there would be gathering outside, and noise".  

"Spectrum House is office space. It would be best for such a licence to be restricted to areas of current retail hubs that are already set up. "

These include the retail strip in Highgate Road, York Rise, or Swains Lane, they said.

There are also fears about traffic issues on the narrow road where cars already park on both sides.

Ilona Hay, chair of the Dartmouth Park Neighbourhood Forum, said: "Many of our concerns are not only linked to the licencing application but the greater impact this will have. We are supporting residents' concerns against this proposal."

Robert Botkai, partner at WS, said the shop would be an addition to the Sainsbury's in Kentish Town Road and be no bigger than 3,000 sq ft.

"The process for licencing is to display signs for 28 days and we have done that. We have been trying to reach out to those with concerns and meet with them to have a discussion."