Conservationists are campaigning to protect green belt land in Lillington which could be lost as part of plans to build hundreds of new houses in the area.
The Protect Lillington Greenbelt Facebook group wants plans for the use of land at Red House Farm and Campion Hills recreation ground to be removed from Warwick District Council’s Local Plan (see front page and page 3).
To draw attention to the places which are included in the plan the group has organised a 2.5-mile circular walk meeting at the Newbold Comyn Arms on Sunday at 3pm.
Group member Dr Diana Taulbut said: “This walk will go ahead whatever the weather.
“We feel very strongly about the loss of the open spaces and countryside which makes Leamington a good place to live.
“The Local Plan has failed to justify the release of these greenbelt areas, failed to acknowledge the loss of public amenities and make compensation, and instead has come up with a specious and unsubstantiated excuse about the ‘regeneration of Lillington’.”
“There has been no assessment of the impact on the landscape, ecology, wildlife corridors or amenity value – no reports and no public consultations have been done for Campion Hills or for the newly revised area of Red House Farm.”
Dr Taulbut, of The Greenways, has questioned how the district council will regenerate Lillington through the Local Plan.
She said: “There is no employment land for the area in the Local Plan.
“Lillington is almost exclusively residential and has very little local employment opportunities.
“There are no large supermarkets, business units or office buildings.
“Recently Lillington has had to fight hard to save its children’s centre and youth work - something which actually does have a chance of breaking the cycle of poverty and deprivation.
“Similarly, Lillington’s library hours have been cut, reducing access to computers and books which some children in Lillington find essential for their school studies, not having computers at home.
“Lillington’s evening bus services have also been slashed – reducing access to transport for evening employment.
“The area has also lost its last pub – which could have been a focus for community cohesion and development.
“And now, the irreplaceable countryside amenity is under threat too.”
The petition to protect Lillington’s Greenbelt can be found online. http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/protect-lillington-greenbelt.html