Two planning applications to develop the Camrose football ground have been rejected.

Councillors tonight made the decision to throw out the applications, recommend for approval by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council's planning officer Sue Tarvit.

The news will come as a blow to the council's planning team which defended the application to build blocks of flats and a care home on the historic football ground site, and to Basron who have spent the best part of two and a half years refining the application.

Both applications were rejected on the grounds that the development did not meet the council's CN8 policy - that the loss of the Camrose stadium outweighed the benefits of the development.

Additionally, concerns were raised of overdevelopment of the area and that the proposed mitigation of improvements to Winklebury were not good enough.

In a three-hour long meeting that discussed in-depth the Basron proposals, councillors overwhelmingly decided to reject the proposals.

The council's CN8 policy, which states that the loss of any sporting facility must be mitigated by "new facilities... where there is evidence of need that cannont be met by existing provision".

Councillors had noted that Winklebury was over-subscribed, and questioned whether the requirement of category C of having the ability to increase the capacity to 3,000 was realistic.

"Everybody knows that I'm not a footballer," said Cllr Nick Robinson (Conservative), who put forward a motion to refuse the application.

"My concerns are that there is no space at Winklebury to put more pitches in. There is no time at Winklebury to facilitate more games. If we can't run more games and you can't more pitches in, where is this provision that these other pitches are going to be?

"You can't play football on a contribution. These pitches are going to be scattered around the borough, but to scatter the football club across the borough is not going to help him.

"It loses its heart, it loses its nucleus.

"I think it fails CN8 on just about every part.

"It says it should be of equal quality and quantity. If it is scattered across Basingstoke, it will not be of quality."

Councillors heard how the Camrose was a "non-designated heritage asset" and should have been thought of as an "asset of community value".

Meanwhile, Cllr Paul Harvey (Basingstoke and Deane Independents) asked officers whether they considered the stadium an acceptable loss based on mitigation proposed: "We have a stadium and that's our starting point, with a grass pitch and two artificial pitches, and that is why CN8 is not met, because I don't think the policy has been met at Winklebury.

"I see no evidence that 3,000 people can attend a football match at Winklebury.

"What they say in terms of caveating is that it should be noted that it is a separate standalone project and in no way linked to the reprovision of the Camrose.

"Clearly Winklebury is oversubscribed.

"We are only being offered money, we are not being offered new facilities.

"We are seeing two stadiums go down to one. In the context of those comments about overuse of Winklebury, that is a requirement of our own policies."

Councillors backed the recommedation for refusal, which was based on three reasons - not satisfying policy CN8 (loss of facility outweights benefit), not satisfying policies EM1 and EM10 (overdevelopment of the site) and inappropriate section 106 agreement.

However, whilst a majority of councillors backed the refusal for each application, it wasn't without concern.

Cllr Anne Court (Conservative) said when giving her decision: "Reluctantly I'll approve the refusal. I'm not sure how we'll get on in appeal."

And Malcolm McPhail, director of applicant Basron, referred to himself as "the forgotten man" in Wednesday night's committee meeting.

"As you can imagine we're somewhat disappointed," he said about the decision to refuse the first application.

He also said that without Rafi Razzak's support, the club would not be in existance.