I would like to draw to the attention of the residents of the delightful historic town of Helston, its newest attraction. Legoland, or as it is properly known the Park an Darras HX1 development site alongside the A394 Falmouth Road.

In 2014 a pre-planning enquiry was submitted for 168 dwellings on this site. A later application was made for 340 dwellings which was refused by Cornwall Council. The development company appealed and following a public hearing by a Planning Inspector he overturned the decision.

Two weeks later the developer submitted a further application for an additional 110 dwellings which must have been in the design process before the enquiry.

This shows the contempt that developers hold for residents as they seek profits above all else. They must provide a percentage of affordable homes, but we all know that these are not actually affordable in Cornwall.

At the 340 stage, Helston residents were asked to attend the guildhall for a presentation by the then developer. We were shown designs which were single and two storey and had traditional builds with Cornish stone which were acceptable. The site has been sold twice since then and the property designs bear no resemblance to what was sold to us and no plastic cladding.

Nearly all the residents bordering the development site signed a petition and submitted their objections within the time limit, relating to the density and the potential flood risk to our properties which are bordered by a stream.

We later found out that we wasted our time as Helston does not have a neighbourhood plan, therefore all objections are ignored, and this also formed part of the planning inspector’s enquiry.

I have subsequently heard that Cornwall Councillors on the Strategic Planning committee seem to pay limited attention to property designs.

Helston is the gateway to the Lizard peninsula, an area of outstanding natural beauty. Until the planning consent for the old Gwealdues Hotel site, situated on the outskirts of town and the three storey houses and flats which are clad in the latest must have finish, Helston had sympathetically styled new homes.

Next time you drive past the site please take a glance at the development and see if the tag fits. Just imagine what it will look like when the site is completed. It is not Helston as we know it.

Malcolm Oliver