CAMPAIGNERS have vowed to continue the fight to protect the Stowe Valley from developers – despite a major setback.
Plans for 51 homes in the valley on the outskirts of Southam have been the green light by Stratford District Council.
Banner Homes’ planned development will sit just 200 metres from the grade II-listed Holy Well – which is believed to be over 1,000 years old. The developers had previously submitted plans for 77 homes which was rejected by the district council.
The Save Holywell Fields group had been fighting to stop development in the area fearing a precedent would be set for the future.
Campaign spokeswoman Marion Childs told The Observer: “We’re worried other developers will want to move in on the land too. There is a responsibility to protect the area from being lost to housing.
“As a group we’re trying our best to protect something so beautiful which is enjoyed by bird watchers, ramblers, scouting groups, nurseries and the people Southam.
“We will continue to fight to stop other developers moving in and taking over the Stowe Valley.”
Campaigners had rubbished previous claims by developers they would be protecting the well, and challenged them to come to Southam to see how the ‘overwhelming majority of people’ were against the plans.
Ward member Coun Tony Bromwich also objected to the plans in such a picturesque part of town.
And he raised concerns the new homes would increase traffic on the neighbouring Manders Croft estate – which would provide access to the new development.