FURIOUS residents in Tetbury who have slammed a decision to allow plans to build nearly 300 homes on greenfield land in the town have taken their concerns right to the top.

Last week when it was announced that Cotswold District Council’s refusal to allow planning permission for a 250-home development at Highfield Farm off London Road and 39 homes south of Berrells Road had been overturned by Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles.

Resident’s group Stop Tetbury’s Excessive Planning Schemes (STEPS) has written an open letter to Prince Charles – who lives at the nearby Highgrove estate – and David Cameron pleading with them to intervene.

In the letter the group said residents were “horrified” the applications had been permitted.

“If nothing is done these houses will be built and Tetbury will never be the same again,” it said. “It also allows other developers (a further 350 houses are in the pipeline) open season to apply using this same precedent.”

“We need some intervention.”

The open letter prompted a raft of comments on the STEPS website, where Katy Lane said she was “very very sad to read this”.

“I am not opposed to people needing homes on brownfield sites but this government will concrete over the south of England for political gains rather than for the gains of the people who live here”, she wrote.

Neil Cook said he was concerned the decisions would set a precedent for future development across the district.

“The decision is purely and clinically one about central government telling local government that they have to build at a prescribed rate, irrespective of population growth, demand, local job opportunities, or any current local plans,” he wrote. “It has become a numbers game, and it’s a game that CDC lost.

“These two sites have become purely sacrificial lambs in the determination of case law that will be used by future developers to justify greenfield development throughout the Cotswolds in the coming years.”