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Save Barton Farm - A Local Campaigning Story

Barton Farm demonstrators

Demonstrators Marching On The High Street Of Winchester

Over 700 people took to the High Street of Winchester on Saturday 14th March, to show their continuing support for the 'Save Barton Farm Campaign', which opposes the Council's proposals to build 2000 new homes on a 300 acre working farm site to the north of Winchester.

Winchester's landscape setting is an integral part of this historic City. Campaigners believe that proposals ignore the importance of this greenfield site as part of its special character. For campaigners this urban extension would not only destroy Winchester's landscape setting, but would create enormous traffi c problems and flood risks for the City.

The march was attended by residents from all around the City, of all ages and from all political parties, united in their support to save Barton Farm. Gavin Blackman, the group's Chairman said:

"I was very encouraged by the turnout and also the engagement of the people who joined the March. All I hope is that given this strength of feeling and the support we have across the political spectrum together with the numerous factors as to why nominating Barton Farm for development is grossly premature, Winchester City Council will omit Barton Farm as a preferred option site."

Save Barton Farm Campaign Group

The Save Barton Farm Group is the largest community group in Winchester and has many CPRE members within its supporters. Chris Slattery, CPRE members said:

"for 10 years CPRE has worked tirelessly and successfully to protect the reserve greenfi eld sites from unnecessary development. Barton Farm is one such site with reserve status. 3 Government Inspectors and the High Court have rejected applications for its development. CPRE works to protect the beauty and tranquillity of the countryside. We believe high quality farmland should be protected and the landscape setting of Winchester should not be blighted by this massive unnecessary development of the reserve site of Barton Farm."

The group will now continue their campaign pressure, to make sure the correct decision is made for both the residents and the landscape of Winchester. For more information, please visit:www.savebartonfarm.co.uk. They have also created a No 10 petition to support their campaign; this can be accessed through their website.

This article first appeared in Hampshire Views No.1, Spring/Summer 2009.

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