VILLAGERS near Alresford are gearing up to fight plans for new housing on their doorsteps.

Residents in Four Marks and Medstead are concerned about East Hampshire District Council's Large Sites Consultation.

Four of the proposed ten sites for 600 or more homes in the next Local Plan are located in the two villages, with one partly in Ropley, plus a 1,200 proposed site at nearby Chawton Park.

After over a decade of development in Four Marks and Medstead, many local residents feel under attack from all sides, lacking in crucial infrastructure and facilities, with the villages' social cohesion threatened.

District and parish councillors requested that one of EHDC's Alton drop-ins be moved to Four Marks & Medstead, but EHDC were unable to do so.

So the councillors arranged their own Large Sites event recently, with information on all 10 sites printed off from the EHDC web site, but with no developers' staff to offer explanations.

On the warm Sunday afternoon 537 residents, including some neighbours from Ropley and Chawton, attended the meeting called by Cllr Ingrid Thomas.

The Village Hall was restricted to only 250 seated and standing inside, so a large crowd listened outside through open doorways and windows, and to a Facebook streaming video set up by Cllr Jonathan May. District councillors for Four Marks, Medstead and Chawton, and Ropley and representatives from the four parish councils gave a brief overview, and tips on how to Comment to EHDC on each of the ten sites.

Councillors stressed that it is vital that the local residents make their views known to EHDC, both objecting or supporting.

The bulk of the meeting had numerous planning questions from the audience, with answers given by the local District and Parish Cllrs where possible.