Campaigners to hold demo against Welborne

Residents at the meeting about Welborne hosted by ''the Funtley Village Society. ''Picture: Sarah Standing (14897-8463)
Residents at the meeting about Welborne hosted by ''the Funtley Village Society. ''Picture: Sarah Standing (14897-8463)
Councillor Luke Stubbs

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CAMPAIGNERS against a new town are planning a protest and are urging residents to show up in support.

The group say they have ‘just one hour to save Fareham’ and a demonstration has been planned to take place outside the Civic Offices on Wednesday – the day independent hearings into plans for new 6,000-home town Welborne are due to start.

Protest organiser Jason Mudge said that support has been growing for the campaign.

Mr Mudge, of Roebuck Avenue, Fareham, said: ‘Over the last couple of years many local groups and societies, and people who care about Fareham, have opposed these monstrous plans to cover thousands of acres of fields north of Fareham.

‘There’s been a groundswell of opinion that people want to ensure the inspector gets the message of how hated and opposed this development is, hence the demo.

‘It will be peaceful, but will make the point that Fareham doesn’t want or need this crazy scheme.’

He added that the group hope independent inspector David Hogger will throw out the plans, and that they have nicknamed the protest Operation Listen.

Ed Morell, chairman of Funtley Village Society, said he would be at the demonstration and encouraged others to attend.

Mr Morell, of Funtley Lane, Funtley, said: ‘It is to demonstrate to the inspector that there is a lot of local opposition, that people are prepared to take time off work to demonstrate.’

Council leader Sean Woodward, who is behind the plans for Welborne, said that the plans had been around for many years and that this was the final stage.

He said that Welborne was needed to stop developers, such as Hallam Land, getting their hands on parcels of land around Fareham.

He added: ‘The question I would ask them is: if not Welborne then where else?’

The demonstration will start at 9am on Wednesday, meeting outside the Ferneham Hall. For more information on the protest search ‘Fareham Development, The Big Debate’ on Facebook.