PLANS to build 50 homes on farmland in a Worcestershire village have been dismissed by parish councillors.

Members of Welland Parish Council voted unanimously to oppose the housing development at Lawn Farm, in Welland, near Malvern.

Their decision comes after a village poll in which residents rejected by 299 votes to 30 the plans to develop the site, the last working farm in the village.

Alan Madsen, chairman of the Welland Residents Action Group, said: “Residents fear that this move to gain permission for around 50 homes is the thin end of the wedge and that we will eventually see many more houses built on the site.

“This is a victory for common sense and a great example of local democracy in action.

“This is the wrong development in the wrong place. It is far too big and it is too far from the centre of the village and it will destroy the character of our village.

“It would be crazy to go ahead with this development when we have a number of smaller more appropriate sites available.”

Residents made their feelings known when more than 100 people crowded into the village hall for an open meeting about the proposal earlier this month.

The application has been made by Kler Developments, but the site is owned by Malvern Hills district councillor and Welland parish councillor Roger Cousins.

Coun Cousins was not present at the parish council meeting, and when the district council decides the application, he will not be allowed to participate.

“We very much hope the district council will take the same sensible view as the parish council but I would urge residents to make their views known,” said Mr Madsen.