RESIDENTS are fighting to save the remaining green space on a site where three houses are due to be built.
People behind the Save The Square campaign are now looking to get village green status for the remaining land at Victoria Square in Lee-on-the-Solent in a bid to prevent more houses being built.
It is very important to keep Victoria Square free of developmentsPhilip Scott
Working with the Lee Residents’ Association, the working group will be applying for the status which protects land from being built on.
It comes after the Diocese of Portsmouth was given permission to build three houses on Victoria Square.
Despite a petition with 900 signatures being collected, a government inspector granted permission for the homes last year.
Philip Scott, co-organiser of the Save The Square Campaign, said: ‘Now they have received permission to build the houses, we have to shift our focus.
‘We received so much community support, we wanted to use that to try and get village green status for the rest of the land.
‘We were all disappointed when the Diocese of Portsmouth decided to go ahead with the houses.
‘But now they have, the Save The Square campaign group has joined up with the residents’ association to start a working group.’
He added: ‘It’s very important to keep Victoria Square free of developments because it is a valued area in Lee-on-the-Solent.
‘It isn’t just for the people living around the square – it is for everyone living in Lee.
‘There is no guarantee that at some point in the future the diocese will decide to build on the land again or sell it for development.
‘It is a difficult process but it is very important to get village green status.’
As previously reported in The News, the Diocese of Portsmouth had its application refused by Gosport Borough Council to build the three homes.
But on appeal, permission was granted by an independent government inspector.
Residents living near the square and around Lee started the Save The Square campaign in a bid to stop the development.