A RACEHORSE trainer is fearing for the future of his business over plans for a concrete crusher.

Chris Gordon, based in Morestead, said he "wanted to die at the yard" he has been operating from since 2007.

But a man named only as Mr Fowler has submitted plans for a concrete crusher at Unit 3 Morestead Farm – just a stone's throw from Mr Gordon's paddock.

If the application is approved, the trainer would be forced to sell his land and move elsewhere.

"This is a massive thing for us," said Mr Gordon. "Concrete crushers and racehorses simply do not go together.

"The stables here were made from reclaimed materials just after Word War One, and horses have been trained here for more than 65 years. When I looked to set up my business, I moved here to the South Downs because of the location: it is a lovely, healthy and quiet environment.

"The small industrial estate next door has been as quiet as an industrial estate could ever be, so it's never been a bother. But if this crusher is approved, it would open up a whole can of worms and ruin us as a business."

In 2007 Mr Gordon had room for just four horses. Now he trains 60 at a time, and employs 20 people.

He continued: "Most of the horses here are owned by people outside of Winchester, but they use us because they love the area and often stay in the city. I'm not sure they would feel the same if a huge concrete crusher was installed."

Mr Gordon also said that residents in the village are worried about their health.

He said that concrete dust is "abhorrent" for humans and animals, and that one elderly neighbour already suffers with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) which caused breathing problems.

The planning application can be viewed on the South Downs National Park website. So far, 12 people have publicly objected.

Richard Corbett of Holden Farm, Holden Lane, Cheriton, said: "The proposed concrete crushing facility would be totally out of place in Morestead, and its unique position at the wesern end of the South Downs National Park. The noise and pollution would ruin the quiet enjoyment of the footpath that runs from Hazeley Down to Winchester from where one can often see wild birds typical of the downland landscape."

The Chronicle has contacted the applicant and awaits a response.