ON JULY 16, 2008, just two months after starting the campaign to stop BAA from using Cherry Lane Cemetery as access between the M4 and T6, a group of us handed in some 8,000 signatures to Parliament.

At that time, we were accused of jumping the gun because the Government had not yet made a decision about allowing the expansion of Heathrow.

However, we carried on, and today, March 11 2009, we are handing in 20,000 signatures on paper, plus over 5,000 on the Prime Minister's web-site's electronic petition - over 35,000 in eight months, all from a very small but hard working group.

We have persevered, and now that the Government have given the go ahead to BAA for runway expansion, we need to make it clear to the country that if our cemetery can be bulldozed in this way it can happen to anyone anywhere, for whatever reason.

The Government cares only about big business - even foreign big business - while the ordinary folk do not get any consideration. Our grief and distress is of no consequence.

Looking back, it was evident that the economy of this country was taking a nose dive from last year, but the Government did nothing.

On the other hand, we saw the way the wind was blowing and so we carried on petitioning around the country.

It is just regrettable that people who no longer live in this country cannot sign, even though their relatives are buried in Cherry Lane Cemetery.

We have had many enquiries from people living in places like the US, the Caribbean, Canada and Australia. Unfortunately their voices cannot be heard.

We will carry on with our petitioning - we will do everything in our power to prevent a road through the cemetery, a road which will destroy graves and create problems for everyone who visits.

How will we ever feel the calmness and quiet that is synonymous with a final resting place?

The Government have a lot to answer for to regain the respect and loyalty of the people whose loved ones are interred at Cherry Lane Cemetery.

Both the Government and BAA have to earn their trust.


Cherry Lane Against Development (CLAD), by email.