By Daniel Hunter

Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, has approved plans for a 77-acre redevelopment in Earls Court and West Kensington.

The scheme will involve demolishing two estates and the Earls Court Exhibition Centre, as developers look to create four 'villages' with a new high street.

The plans will create 7,500 homes and thousands of permanent jobs, but despite this there has been strong opposition to the plans.

Campaigners from Save Earl's Court West Kensington & Gibbs Green estates have opposed them, arguing that the loss of Earls Court would damage trade and that the centre should be listed.

London mayor Boris Johnson could have chosen to turn the scheme down or call for a public hearing when he met with his planning team on Wednesday.

He said he was "acutely aware of the concerns" some residents had.

But, he added: "I'm in no doubt that the development will provide a massive boost not just to this part of the capital, but to London's wider economy as well."

Labour London Assembly Member Tom Copley said on Twitter: "Very disappointed but not at all surprised that the Mayor has approved demolition of Earls Court Exhibition Centre.

"An appalling decision."

The development, straddling the boroughs of Kensington and Chelsea and Hammersmith and Fulham, is expected to take 20 years to complete.

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