Sir Mike Penning has given his support to a campaign against development on Hemel Hempstead’s last beauty nature spots.
Sir Mike met with local residents who are campaigning against a planning application for the construction of 390 dwellings and a residential care home on green belt fields west of Leighton Buzzard Road at Piccotts End.
The land in the planning application is to the west of Leighton Buzzard Road, north of Galley Hill and is next to land that preserves a Roman Villa.
The site is home to red kites, herons, egrets, swallows and occasionally, a pair of peregrine falcons which nest in the trees.
The River Gade, a valuable habitat for wildlife, runs along the bottom of the site and is a characteristic feature of the Chilterns.
Sir Mike said: “I totally support this campaign. This is a vital green space, within the protected Green Belt, and overdevelopment here – on top of all the additional housing already planned around the edges of the town – is totally unnecessary.”
He added: “Quite simply, this would be a step too far and is one of those ‘over my dead body’ situations!”
Campaign organiser, Angela Mitchell thanked Sir Mike for his unwavering support.
She said: “We are very much encouraged and very grateful for all the support from the local community. I urge everyone to sign our petition to protect this unique and beautiful place.”
The petition can be signed online here.