A seven-year-old boy who struggles with breathing says his life has improved dramatically as traffic reduced during lockdown.

Noah, who lives with his mum and dad in Waltham Forest, was born prematurely and has struggled with breathing his whole life.

Since moving to the east London borough, he says his issues have worsened.

“I’ve had lots of trouble sleeping and often I am awake coughing and struggling to breathe”, Noah said in a Youtube video published by Citizens UK – an independent community organising group.

“It seems the air in London is very bad for me. What is amazing that during lockdown I have slept so much better and I haven’t kept my parents up at night.

“There have been less cars on the roads near my house and I haven’t had to walk to school in all the traffic.

“I’ve slept so well, I feel so much better. I want to see my friends and I grow up to go to school in a greener city.”

Citzens UK spoke to Noah as part of a ten-month listening project feature more than 700 Londoners to debate their concerns for the city, capture their priorities and influence the agenda of the next mayor.

Participants came from 20 London boroughs and from businesses, schools, places of worship, parent and migrant groups, universities and charities.

The study found participants were mostly concerned with climate action, health and the provision of green jobs.

A report by think tank Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) based on the feedback will be published next week.

Luke Murphy, head of IPPR’s environmental justice commission, said: "Covid-19 has shone a light on and worsened inequalities across our capital city. Yet this report shows that action to tackle the climate crisis can help us build back better after the pandemic.

“To succeed, Londoners are clear that they want to see the benefits, and the risks of the net zero transition to be fairly shared. And they want the next mayor to focus on delivering well paid green jobs and securing warmer homes and reducing fuel poverty.”

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