This is a letter from me published in the Camden New Journal on 19 March 2015.
It was a pleasure to join Jessica Learmond-Criqui and local parents and schoolchildren at the handing in of the petition and letter against the development at Hampstead’s 29 New End to the Secretary of State for Local Government.
The Secretary of State has discretion to revoke planning permission if it’s considered ‘grossly wrong’ in the wider public interest. I believe that the decision to allow the development is grossly wrong. It will have a significant impact on the health of 1,000 children at three nearby schools. It will harm local heritage in one of Britain’s most invaluable conservation areas. And it’s opposed by almost every resident I know.
In making its decision, the Department will consider a number of factors. A Neighbourhood Plan is highly persuasive, but as the Department told us on Friday, other factors can also play a part. That includes local opinion. So let’s make local opinion as loud and clear as it can be.
As well as the letter and petition, there’s a march around Hampstead, starting at 29 New End this Saturday at 2pm. I urge everyone that appreciates Hampstead’s unique heritage and architecture and everyone that wants to protect the tranquillity of our village and the health of our children to be there. The fight to protect New End is not at an end yet!
For more about my campaign to oppose over-development, click here.