Block after block of flats, luxury apartments and houses have sprung up until whole roads we once knew well have become unrecognisable.

Countless acres of green space disappear and wildlife vanishes. When people campaign and councils refuse planning permission, the developers go to appeal. The Government has the perceived need for hundreds of thousands of new homes and the developer will often win in the end, yet the council or residents have no right of reply.

The irony is that if the council wins the appeal it is the council and ratepayers, 'us', who pick up the bill. The true cost in manpower and legal costs could run into thousands.

There must be a better way. If you have no idea where new housing is going to be until a few months before building work starts, how can you plan utilities? The same goes for schools, hospitals and care for the elderly. Buildings are being parachuted in everywhere, which is causing constant roadworks, traffic jams, pollution and stress, as well wasting resources.

We the people need an independent inquiry or a change in government policy to sort this mess out. As for the wildlife, once its environment has gone it doesn't come back; countless developments have proven this. Numbers of birds, mammals, insects and amphibians are all in decline and we end up with a much smaller green lung for ever more people.

Ths increase in London's building stock should be engineered rather than being a random, quick-buck, quick-fix solution. Unless the Government's attitude changes we have seen only the tip of this particular iceberg. For many of you it could be your turn next.

The first you will know of a new development is when a letter from the council pops through the letterbox (assuming you are among the limited number of people deemed to live near enough to the location) and an A4 sign is tied to a lamp post close to the site. By then about a week of your three weeks will have gone in which you need to view plans, have discussions with neighbours, take advice and put forward your objections, on planning grounds only.


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