CAMPAIGNERS opposing plans to build 150 homes in Minchinhampton have been handed a boost after a parish council vote last night.

At a meeting, Minchinhampton parish councillors voted unanimously to object to the plans to build the houses at Glebe Farm and Tobacconist Farm.

The application has been submitted by developer Archstone Land Ltd and includes 45 affordable homes.

Plans include land for a new doctor’s surgery, a public open space for a community orchard or allotments and a series of financial contributions.

Council vice chairman Cllr Roy Nicholas said: “I have been a member of this council for nigh on 50 years and never before has so much public interest been generated by any planning application I can remember in all those years.

“This extremely sensitive site should be refused. Quite often there is gridlock now. Just imagine the chaos that would be created if 200 plus cars were to be added.”

Cllr Nicholas said the design of the mostly four bedroom new homes had no connection with the existing terraced properties of the historic town of Minchinhampton.

Public participation was led by resident Mr Phil Raby-Smith, chair of the Protect Our Space protest group which had already sent its collective objections about Glebe Farm to the Stroud District Council.

The group Save Glebe Farm argues the area does not have the infrastructure to support such an expansion and that the public is firmly opposed to the plans.

Mr Raby Smith said: “The unanimous objection from the Parish Council is a huge milestone in our campaign.

“We are sure there will still be a long, drawn-out process but it is inspiring to see the commitment of locals residents who have come together to ensure that the views of the silent majority are heard."

More than 650 people have objected to the application, he added, over 90 per cent of them from within the parish.

Developers Archstone have said Glebe Farm is the 'best location' for new homes in the town.

A spokesman from the developers said: “This planning application is a rare opportunity to provide an affordable site for a much improved modern surgery for the town.

“The existing Minchinhampton surgery building is very limited and the Practice has been looking for an alternative site for many years.

“Other community benefits include large areas of flexible public open space which could be available for local clubs subject to further discussions.”