MORE than 3,000 residents have signed petitions opposing two huge housing developments on green belt land in Thurrock.

Two petitions, one opposing construction of 800 homes on land just off Lampits Hill - between Corringham and the Five Bells roundabout - and the other opposing a proposed 350 homes on land near Chadwell St Mary have now been 0submitted to Thurrock Council.

Fierce campaigns are being fought against both developments, with these two petitions giving a clear indication of the strength of feeling surrounding the green belt land.

A whopping 1,800 people from Corringham, Stanford-le-Hope and Fobbing signed the petition opposing new homes in Corringham.

Developers Iceni are behind the plans which would increase the area’s population by 3,000 people.

While 1,500 residents living in the Chadwell St Mary area signed a petition opposing homes planned for Heath Place - which developer CJC Development Co Ltd hope to build.

Angela Ruff, of Orsett Heath, who is leading the fight against development on land there, said: “This development would devastate the area.

“We do not have the infrastructure to support it and we do not have enough doctors in the area - we already often have to wait weeks for an appointment.

“There is one dentist and there are not enough school places to support this proposal.”

She handed the petition in at Civic Offices with Labour’s Chadwell St Mary ward councillor Barbara Rice. She said: “This is grade two agricultural land and only 14 per cent of all growing land is of this quality.

“The road network is not sufficient to take this development and the infrastructure cannot support it.”

Tory James Halden, who represents the Homesteads ward, joined Anne Sandu - who is leading the fight in Corringham - to hand in the Save Corringham Greenbelt petition.

Mr Halden said: “We value our greenbelt and open space, and that is why we have a core strategy for building to ensure that we house our families by developing Brownfield sites and the like.”

Thurrock Gazette:

Barbara Rice, left, with Angela Ruff delivering petition to the council

An enormous 2,600 homes could be across Thurrock over the next few years.