A campaign to save a green belt site has raised £4,000 to fight a planning appeal.

Cala Homes and Angle Property last month appealed Dacorum Borough Council’s decision to refuse permission for 135 homes at the Rectory Farm site in Kings Langley, on October 18.

In response, Kings Langley District and Residents Association promised to “fight all the way”, alongside CPRE Hertfordshire, and it began raising money to take a professional role in the upcoming public inquiry set for April 9.

Watford Observer: Rectory Farm.Rectory Farm. (Image: Kings Langley and District Residents Association)

It has set a goal of £20,000, which it estimates would cover consultant and legal costs, and has gone from £500 to around £4,000 since Monday (February 2).

Residents’ association chair Gary Ansell said: “Kings Langley residents have seen enough development over recent years in and around our village on our brownfield sites.

“The green belt was put in place to prevent sprawl and the green fields at Rectory Farm do exactly that by stopping coalescence with Nash Mills.

Watford Observer: Rectory Farm.Rectory Farm. (Image: Kings Langley and District Residents Association)

“The site is no longer in Dacorum’s Local Plan and should be wholly made into an open green space for the use of existing villagers and not used to further increase the population of the village and adding additional strain on local schools and services.”

He added that the association does have funds in its coffers to make up a gap, but without additional funding the inquiry could “wipe us out”.

Watford Observer: The Rectory Farm site.The Rectory Farm site. (Image: Kings Langley & District residents Association)

On the campaign’s website, Green Belt Matters, it highlights that a public inquiry is the costliest outcome for it and Dacorum Borough Council to be involved in.

However, it claims that the site is so important due to fears it could “open the floodgates” for more fields to be taken to appeal and Kings Langley to merge with Nash Mills and Abbots Langley.

It asked: “How many residents live in Kings Langley because of our surrounding countryside?”

Watford Observer: The Rectory Farm site from above.The Rectory Farm site from above. (Image: KL&DRA)When the appeal began, on January 8, a spokesperson for Cala Homes and Angle Property said: “We believe this sustainably located site will provide many benefits to the local community.

“By lodging the appeal, we hope to provide 135 much-needed new homes, of which 40 per cent will be affordable, offering a range of options for buyers.”

They also highlighted benefits of the plan including a café, workshop, orchards, allotments, repair shed, cycle hub, and a new country park to open to the public with play areas.