THE public is being urged to help save the Camrose from development by writing to the council to remove it from the Local Plan.

Planning applications to concrete over the historic Winchester Road football ground and build flats were thrown out following a crunch meeting at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council last month.

But under the government's new planning White Paper, any site earmarked for development in council's Local Plan could automatically get planning permission.

Cllr Gary Watts, ward councillor for South Ham, is calling on the public to respond to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council's current consultation by asking the authority to remove the football ground from its Local Plan.

The authority owns 29 per cent of the Camrose and is being urged to purchase it to restore the site on behalf of the town.

Cllr Watts said the site held cultural and historical importance and should be protected.

He said: "The football club had played there for 70 years. It is a big part of the town's history and I don't think we should let it go without putting up a fight. At the end of the day, if the council are prepared to pay £10million to support building a hotel, they should be able to keep this stadium."

He said: "The council owns 29 per cent of it. They have the power to compulsory purchase it. There are all these avenues that need to be explored urgently."

The Camrose Stadium was gifted to Basingstoke Town Football Club and Basingstoke council by Lord Camrose. Fans who owned a stake in the club felt 'pressured' into selling their shares before current owner Basron obtained the freehold in 2016.

n You can help protect the Camrose by writing to Cllr Mark Ruffell, cabinet member for planning, to ask him to remove the Camrose from the Local Plan. Email