A public consultation has begun on a controversial proposal to build homes on green belt land.

An application for 1,200 properties on the Harlow/Epping border has been submitted by developer Crest Nicholson.

The West Sumners proposal forms part of the Harlow Local Development Plan, which could see up to 15,000 homes built in the area over the next 20 years.

Harlow Council said green belt land in Epping Forest and Hertfordshire would have to be built on to meet targets.

But there is strong opposition to the proposal, with The Stop West Sumners campaign claiming the impact will be felt across a wide area.

Sumners Residents’ Association member, Mark Rowe, said in a statement: “We need to make it clear to the council that this area in the south west of Harlow is totally unsuitable for development as this has no infrastructure to cope with the thousands of extra houses, people and cars.

“We really need everyone to complete this. It is the one official chance we have of stopping this development being included in Harlow's plans.”

The plans include a provision of 30 per cent “affordable” homes.

The consultation ends on May 30.

To fill out the consultation questionnaire click here.