Threatened Animal Welfare Centre “thrilled with overwhelming community support” after 6,000 people sign petition

Daily Echo, 20 November 2018: OVER 6000 people have now publicly supported St Francis Animal Welfare, after another 1000 people have signed the petition in the last 24 hours. The Eastleigh community has united in support of ‘one of the oldest animal shelters in Hampshire’, after it was announced that the Council’s local plan will place it under severe threat… Keith House, leader of Eastleigh Borough Council, said: “The Local Plan is with the Planning Inspector ahead of the Inquiry and as such is now out of the Council’s hands. The Inspector will not consider a petition. When the Local Plan is endorsed by the Inspector, any planning application for development will have to give regard to site issues including neighbouring land uses.”


General election, 12 December – how do your candidates view Eastleigh’s Local Plan?

ADD UPDATE, 18 November 2019: Ahead of the general election on 12 December, Action Against Destructive Development (ADD) is keen to help voters in Eastleigh, Winchester and the Meon Valley gain a better understanding of how their prospective parliamentary candidates feel about Eastleigh Borough Council’s Local Plan and, in particular, its plans for a ‘Strategic Growth Option’ (SGO) of 5,300 houses and a major new road north of Allbrook, Bishopstoke and Fair Oak. The Planning Inspector’s examination of the Plan starts on Thursday, 21 November, and runs for six weeks.

We are therefore giving every candidate in these constituencies the opportunity to supply ADD with up to 350 words on their views on Eastleigh’s Plan.  We are happy to include appropriate images and links. 

We will publish their statements on our website as supplied, agreeing any edits with the candidate. All statements will appear on the ADD timeline on Facebook and on Twitter – and we will email all our supporters on Tuesday 10 December with links to each of the statements.

We will be emailing this invitation to all candidates shortly but invite any of them to get in touch with us beforehand, if they would like to do so. 

Our email address is [email protected]. We look forward to hearing from each of the candidates on this critical issue for thousands of people not only in Eastleigh but also in neighbouring communities.



HOLMES Paul, Conservative and Unionist Party
JORDAN Sam, Labour Party
MELDRUM Ron, Green Party
MURPHY Lynda Jane, Liberal Democrats 


BAKER George, Labour Party
BRINE Steve, Conservative and Unionist Party
FERGUSON, Paula Wendy, Liberal Democrats
SKELTON Teresa, The Justice & Anti-Corruption Party


BUNDAY Matt, Labour Party
DRUMMOND Flick, Conservative and Unionist Party
NORTH Lewis, Liberal Democrats
WALLACE Malcolm, Green Party 


5,000 people sign petition to stop animal shelter being “squeezed out” by Eastleigh Local Plan

Daily Echo, 18 November 2019: ONE of Hampshire’s oldest animal rescue centre’s is pleading for public support, as it fears the council’s local plan will ‘squeeze them out of existence’. Almost 5,000 people have signed a petition to save St Francis Animal Welfare in Fair Oak, before the council’s local plan to build thousands of homes east of Bishopstoke goes ahead, which would see houses built right up to the border of the rescue centre. The 62-year-old rescue centre cares for, rehabilitates and re-homes over 100 domestic animals who will no longer be cared for by their owners. Annette Lodge, the charity’s chair, said: “We don’t know what our future is… We fear we’ll be asked to move out but we were here first.”



Important announcement: Parking arrangements for Botleigh Grange protest, this Friday 22 November

ADD UPDATE, 16 November 2019 – PLEASE READ: As many of you know, we are encouraging anyone who is opposed to Eastleigh’s Local Plan to attend a mass ‘presence’ at 8.30am this Friday, 22 November, in front of Botleigh Grange Hotel where the examination is taking place. This is aimed at Eastleigh Borough Council (EBC), not at the Planning Inspector who is required to determine the soundness of the plan and is completely impartial. The press and media will be present to record the opposition of local people and we will have photo-shoot at 8.30am prompt.

Thank you to everyone who has already indicated via our Facebook event or by email to [email protected] that you are coming. Your support is much appreciated. Please read on for an important announcement re car parking.

Car parking at the hotel is very limited so we are encouraging maximum car sharing but in addition special arrangements have been made as per below. Please follow this guidance carefully so that we can make our views known without causing undue disruption to others, including hotel guests.

  • Anyone who is coming primarily for the demonstration at 8.30am and cannot stay for long thereafter is asked to drive to the Ageas Bowl in Botley Road (SO30 3XH) and then take a shuttle bus from there to the Botleigh Grange Hotel. The buses will be provided by EBC and will collect people from the Ageas Bowl’s west car park, which is on the right off Marshall Drive (the main entrance road). The buses will travel to and from Botleigh Grange and the Ageas Bowl between 8.00am and 12 noon. Stewards will be on hand to give assistance where needed. The journey should take less than 10 minutes.
  • Parking at Botleigh Grange is very limited but those who wish to stay for more than a couple of hours after the demonstration to attend the Planning Inspector’s examination should drive to the hotel where there will be some parking available. Again, stewards will be there to direct people to the appropriate parking area. Please do not park without guidance as some areas of the business park around the hotel are subject to penalty fines for unauthorised parking.

After years of hard work, we are optimistic about a successful outcome to our campaign against Eastleigh’s ill-considered and deeply flawed plan. We are hugely grateful to our thousands of supporters and look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at 8.30am next Friday, 22 November. Together we can win.

Thank you.


Plea for support at Botleigh Grange Hotel as ADD fights Eastleigh’s Local Plan – 8.30am on 22 Nov – spread the word!

ADD UPDATE, 11 November 2019: After nearly four years of fighting Eastleigh Borough Council (EBC)’s Local Plan and the damage it would cause our area and quality of life, ADD will finally be making its case to the Planning Inspector later this month.

We hope that this will be the last time we will ask you to show your support – so please join our peaceful demonstration at 8.30am on Friday 22 November at Botleigh Grange Hotel and Spa (Grange Road, Hedge End, SO30 2GA), where the examination is being held. Let’s make sure the Planning Inspector understands the strength and depth of local feeling about this appallingly destructive scheme.

We have been told that EBC is working with the hotel to ensure there will be sufficient parking. We will provide full details once we have them. In the meantime, we encourage people to car share as far as possible.

You will be free to leave at just after 9.00am, although you would also be welcome to stay for the hearing itself.

To give us a sense of who is able to come, please either register here at our Facebook event or email [email protected] to let us know. Do also say if you will need a lift.

If you cannot make 8.30am but would like to come at another part of the day, the hearing finishes at 5.30pm. Whatever time you come, you will see many of the ADD team there.

And whether you can come or not, please spread the word! 



Warnings from Cllr Jan Warwick over threat to Winchester district from 5,000 homes in Eastleigh district

Hampshire Chronicle: 11 November 2019: VILLAGES near Winchester will suffer from Eastleigh Borough Council’s plans for 5,000 homes, Conservative County Councillor Jan Warwick told a Local plan inspector. Eastleigh’s proposal for 5,000 homes on greenbelt land will lead to extra traffic and pollution in Otterbourne, Compton and Shawford. Cllr Warwick, who represents the Downlands division that covers the villages, said the authority’s Liberal Democrats had not listened to her residents, who would be impacted by the Local Plan to concrete over the boundary with Winchester City Council. She explained there was no evidence around the timing, mitigation, funding and delivery for the development’s proposed link road, or studies showing the impact on the existing road infrastructure. She also raised concerns about the proposals’ carbon footprint.


Save St Francis Animal Sanctuary from Eastleigh’s Local Plan – please sign petition

ADD Update, 8 November 2019: A quick but important update – please take a few seconds to read! ADD is supporting St Francis Animal Sanctuary, based on Mortimers Lane in Fair Oak, in its efforts to persuade Keith House, leader of Eastleigh Borough Council, that his Local Plan proposal for the development of housing in the adjacent to Mortimers Lane (the so-called Option C area) will have a devastating impact on the animal sanctuary. Eastleigh has not even responded to requests from St Francis to recognise the problems that will occur if Eastleigh’s ill-considered plan goes ahead, let alone help them find a solution. A planning inspector will start her public examination of Eastleigh’s Local Plan on 21 November, with hearings lasting for a period of six weeks.

To sign St Francis’s petition “to tell EBC and its leader they can’t ride roughshod over a charity, its staff and animals like this” (see details below), click here.


“We the undersigned demand that Eastleigh Borough Council and its leaders save St Francis Animal Welfare by consulting with them, allowing an agreed amount of sufficient open space around them and a belt of woodland to mitigate noise.

Eastleigh Borough Council’s Local Plan for development would surround us with houses and shops and push us and our animals out of our shelter. This happened to us with development around our old shelter in Horton Heath 40 years ago. Our manager felt unsafe in her home because of all the noise complaints and aggression. Development up to our borders in the EBC plan will make our lives impossible like before.

Eastleigh Borough Council and its leaders have ignored this and all the concerns that we’ve put to them.

We need the plan to have lots of open space around us to walk our dogs, and for the sake of people in any new development. We also need a belt of woodland to mitigate the noise our animals make.

Please sign and share our petition to tell EBC & its leader they can’t ride roughshod over a charity, its staff & animals like this. We’re one of Hampshire’s oldest animal charities who help animals from all over Hampshire and beyond.

Save St Francis Animal Welfare!

For more information on the work that we do at St Francis Animal Welfare, please visit our website.”


REMINDER: Please can you come to Planning Inspector’s hearing at 8.30am on 22 November?

ADD UPDATE, 1 November October 2019: As you’ll recall from our post of 11 October, the Independent Planning Inspector will begin her examination of Eastleigh’s Local Plan at Botleigh Grange Hotel & Spa on 21 November, running until the end of January.

Given how much hard work ADD’s volunteers, supporters and professional advisers have put into fighting Eastleigh’s Plan, we are asking everyone who is against it to turn up at Botleigh Grange Hotel & Spa (SO30 2GA) at 8.30am on Friday 22 November. This will be half an hour before the start of the day’s examination, and will enable us to demonstrate the strength of public feeling against this appalling plan. Our aim is to have a giant ‘team photo’ outside the front of the hotel at 8.30am.

To give us a sense of who is able to come, not least so that we can arrange suitable logistics, please either register here at our Facebook event or email [email protected] to let us know.

If you can’t make 8.30am but would like to come at another part of the day, the hearing finishes at 5.30pm. Whatever time you come, you will see many of the ADD team there.

We at ADD firmly believe Eastleigh’s Plan is unsustainable and unworkable. The examination process will expose this. Thanks for all your support so far. The last time we turned up in force was on 14 December 2017, when over 800 of us made our voice heard against the council’s shocking plans. 

While the evidence will do the talking at the Inspector’s examination, it is essential that as many of us as possible make our feelings felt – for one last time – on 22 November. We look forward to seeing everyone there, ideally at 8.30am! 



Local Bishopstoke artist donates painting to help ADD’s fundraising effort – place your bids here!

ADD UPDATE, 31 October 2019: A Bishopstoke-based professional artist is so incensed by Eastleigh’s Local Plan that he has donated a beautiful painting (above) to support ADD’s fundraising efforts as we prepare our case for the Planning Inspector’s examination, which starts on 21 November.

For Paul Stratton of East Drive, who has lived in the village all his life, the countryside and woodlands near his home are an inspiration for many of his pictures. The 16 x 20 inch (40 cm x 50 cm) framed oil painting he has contributed shows Bishopstoke Woods as seen from Upper Barn Copse. The view would disappear if the Local Plan went ahead, even though the area has one of the highest levels of bio-diversity in the borough.

Paul’s painting is being auctioned here. This one-off auction will run until 5pm on 15 November.

“As a pensioner on a fixed income, I am in no position to make a large financial contribution so this is my way of helping ADD,” says Paul. “If the Local Plan went ahead it would be a disaster for the village and its environment.”

ADD is currently raising money to employ the legal and consultancy support it needs to make its case when the Planning Inspector starts her hearings into the Local Plan in three weeks.

“We have enjoyed considerable support with our fundraising, as we approach the final stage of the campaign leading up to the Planning Inspector’s examination next month. However, the fact that the whole process has been drawn out by Eastleigh and their continual release of further reports which try to justify their flawed plan, all of which have to be assessed, has meant additional expense. We now need to be able to engage our specialist consultants to attend at key stages of the Inspector’s examination and we have limited ability to do so,” said ADD chair John Lauwerys.

“We are immensely grateful to Paul for his support. It is a great illustration of how the community in Bishopstoke and elsewhere in Eastleigh is pulling together to back our campaign. We feel buoyed by the support that we are receiving.”

If you do not wish to bid for Paul’s painting but would like to donate to ADD’s campaign, click here.  Whether you have given before, or will be giving for the first time, your donations will be crucial in ensuring we are able to present our arguments as forcefully as possible at the Inspector’s forthcoming hearings.

Thank you!


To all ADD supporters: Please attend Planning Inspector’s Hearing on Friday 22 November at Botleigh Grange Hotel & Spa

ADD UPDATE, 11 October 2019: From 21 November until the end of January the Independent Planning Inspector will be conducting multiple hearings to assess the viability of Eastleigh’s Local Plan.

ADD has been working hard towards this examination and with thanks to your generous support have hired planning, environmental, traffic and legal experts to ensure the case against the current plan is well fought.

In addition to supplying the expert information we need to make sure the Inspector understands the strength of public feeling against this unsustainable and unworkable plan. We want to demonstrate just how much we care!

So on Friday 22 November we are asking for ADD’s Army to turn out in force and show the valid concerns amongst the local community. If you can come for the whole day that would be brilliant. Even if you can only attend for an hour or two your presence matters. Ideally, we would like as many people as possible outside the front of the hotel at 8.30am for a giant ‘team photo’. The hearing starts 9.00am and finishes at 5.30pm. 

We will be releasing more details nearer the time but in the meantime please do share with family and friends. Click here to our Facebook event. 

We at ADD firmly believe the plan is unsustainable and unworkable. The examination process will expose this. Thanks for all your support so far. The last time we turned up in force was on 14 December 2017, when over 800 of us made our voice heard against the council’s shocking plans. By joining together as a community we really can make a difference.

While the evidence will do the talking at the Inspector’s examination, it’s essential that as many of us as possible make our feelings felt – for one last time – on 22 November.

We look forward to seeing everyone there! Once more with feeling.