BLOCKLEY villagers have successful fought off the latest attempt at unwanted development in their village.

But the owner of a housing developer behind the rejected application says he is considering an appeal, as he believes it has a “very strong case”.

The Cotswold Journal reported in January about the fight by the Blockley Environment Action Group (BEAG) to block Bellpark developer’s latest application for five homes on land off Park Road. It was the latest battle for the campaigners, who had fought proposed developments in the past fearing that the village would lose its identity through over development.

On February 27, Cotswold District Council released its decision notice on the proposed development on part of Colonel’s Piece field, confirming it had been refused.

After hearing the news a BEAG statement was released that said: “Our community wrote over 90 letters of objection, widely quoted in the case officer’s report, and there were no letters in support.

“That’s an eloquent statement in itself of what this community thinks about this location and what it is prepared to do.

“To all of you who assisted in bringing about this very welcome outcome, our heartfelt thanks for helping to keep Blockley a village – well done, everybody.”

The key reasons given for the refusal included that the development would be outside the designated development boundary, the development would harm the area of natural beauty by urbanising this rural approach to the village and that development would harm the setting of heritage assets most notably the conservation area and listed buildings.

But Daniel Parkinson, from Bellpark, said the fourth reason “that the proposed development does not provide any affordable dwellings and is therefore contrary to the aforementioned policy” was one they particularly felt there were grounds to challenge.

“We didn’t need to provide affordable dwellings as five homes is below the threshold,” he said.

“I told planning officers (when submitting the application) if they wanted affordable homes we would add it in. There is nothing more I would want than to put in an application of 15 homes, with 10 of them affordable.

“To be rejected on that is outrageous. It is contentious, it should have gone to a committee.”

Mr Parkinson said the firm was now meeting with barristers to consider the next steps for an appeal, and also hit out of the Blockley group that fought the application.

And he stressed again the villagers should not be resistant to new housing, highlighting the local plan states there should be 60 to 65 dwellings by 2031.

“They didn’t grab a pitchfork and oppose the village hall, complaining that ruined their views,” Mr Parkinson said.

“The problem is many people in Blockley stay there only at weekends, in a second home.

“They can’t just say ‘we don’t want it’, there has to be something material in their objection.

“That is nimbyism.”

READ MORE: 'Blockley residents should not be resistant to housing'