Trampling on the past(February 04, 2014)
Small groups of community campaigners are becoming a regular sight at an 183-year-old landmark in the market town of Warminster which sits on the River Wylye.
The Spurt Mead 'tree-huggers' are protesting about a town council committee decision to reverse its opposition about a plan to build a housing estate on a water meadow on the banks of the River Wylye and a tributary.
"I joined the campaign to save Spurt Mead because I am tired of small little towns becoming subject to so-called 'growth," said Stacie Allensby.
"Is it necessary to be building all these houses on to these cram-packed sites in order to promote growth in our town? No!"
Developers HPH Ltd has seen a Neighbourhood Development Order scheme rejected by the electorate at the council elections last May. The town council pulled out of the project.
A planning application was then submitted and did not get the support of the town council when asked by the planning authority for its view.
It was withdrawn, re-submitted with little changed, and then to the fury of locals the town council committee changed its mind and raised no objections.
The 183-year-old milestone will also be uprooted along with several LIme trees planted by the Temple family during the First World War.
"The Spurt Mead project is uniquely bizarre in that they are building on history and a natural habitat in my eyes," added Stacie. "The history being the history of the Mead itself."
"Yes to some it may be just an open field and Stonehenge is just a pile of rocks!"
"A man cannot walk forward if he tramples on the past with the same foot. "
"What gives these people rights to move a part of our heritage and then to destroy several trees that have done nothing but grow because they are in the way now."
Photo: Stacie with Sky with (l-R) Clare Hancock, Cllr. Paul Macdonald, Louise Clark, and Jenny and Graham Jenkins at the proposed entrance to the water meadow..