You have to wonder what informs the relationship between Thurrock Council and developers operating in the area. This is because developers all too often seem to be able to flout the conditions imposed upon them when they get the planning permission to go ahead with a project. This is the latest example that has come to our attention: Campaigner’s anger at council wall of silence over building work blight on neighbourhood.

To facilitate a development of new houses on the site of former allotments in Belmont Road, Grays, residents in neighbouring Parker Road have seen much of the pocket park at the top end of their road taken over by the builders to use as a storage/operational compound. To add insult to injury, access to the building site is via a lane running between two houses.

There have been numerous breaches by the builders of the conditions laid down in the planning permission. Breaches that councillors and officers at Thurrock Council seem only too happy to turn a blind eye to. Residents are suffering with noise, dirt and extra traffic on a narrow residential road. On top of the loss of the open space, this is blighting their lives and for some residents, it’s adversely affecting their health.

A petition with 1,171 signatures from local residents on it expressing their worries about the impact of the development was ignored by Thurrock Council. When the Thurrock Independent online paper tried to raise the concerns of residents with the council, they were brushed off.

Yet again, in relation to building developments, this is another instance of Thurrock Council arrogantly dismissing the worries of residents. Some commentators wonder why turnouts at local elections are so low. This is yet another example of why people are losing faith in local governance and the system of national governance behind it. It’s simply because the authorities routinely dismiss the concerns of ordinary people.

There’s only so much people can take of having their hopes, aspirations and fears routinely trashed by those who arrogantly think they have the right to rule over us. Crunch time is coming…