The countryside champions

Case Study

Bere Hill, near Andover

view from bere hill

Bere Hill, a feature on which the attractive landscape setting of Andover largely depends, lies to the South of the town between the built up area and the main trunk route to the West - the A303. It has a particularly attractive treeline running alongside "Ladies Walk", a Victorian legacy. It has been targeted by developers on a number of occasions, even though its importance as open countryside and its back drop to town has been recognised in local plans for many years.

In 1989 a developer wished to build a 'high tech' business park on the hill and appealed against Test Valley Borough Council's refusal of the development application. We supported the Council and presented evidence of the hill's landscape and public amenity value at the ensuing public inquiry which endorsed the Council's decision. A year or so later the water authority that has a reservoir on the town side of the hill sought to profit by building a radio transmitter mast on the reservoir. This was not specifically for mobile telephones and we were again able to support the Council at an inquiry following their refusal of the development application.

But as with many sites that developers have an interest in, the issue does not go away and it was raised again - and rejected - in the current Local Plan debate.

Test Valley District Group
CPRE Hampshire
May 2006