Star of Channel 4’s Time Team Francis Pryor backs Save Wenny Road Meadow campaign

06 February, 2020 - 12:37
TV star Francis Pryor (pictured) has backed the Save Wenny Road Meadow campaign. Picture: Twitter/@PryorFrancis

TV star Francis Pryor (pictured) has backed the Save Wenny Road Meadow campaign. Picture: Twitter/@PryorFrancis

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Star of Channel 4’s hit-TV show Time Team, Francis Pryor, has backed the Save Wenny Road Meadow campaign.

The latest Save Wenny Road Meadow demonstration in January. Picture: Rob MorrisThe latest Save Wenny Road Meadow demonstration in January. Picture: Rob Morris

The public battle to save an open space near Chatteris from housing development caught the attention of the famous archaeologist online.

Pryor, famed for discovering Bronze Age Flag Fen and making more than fifty appearances as lead archaeologist on Time Team, has labelled plans "a disgrace".

He took to twitter to express his views, describing plans to build about 80 homes on the historic former Manor Park as "nothing short of landscape vandalism" and that it "must not happen".

The news comes after Local councillors, dog walkers, photographers and children were amongst the 40-something campaigners at the latest demonstration in January.

TV star Francis Pryor (pictured) has backed the Save Wenny Road Meadow campaign. Picture: Twitter/@PryorFrancis TV star Francis Pryor (pictured) has backed the Save Wenny Road Meadow campaign. Picture: Twitter/@PryorFrancis

Cllr Daniel Divine said: "The issue of whether or not to build on Wenny Road Meadow transcends politics.

"History, ecology and local amenity makes this green space unique and must be taken into account.

"There is nothing else which would act as a substitute for Wenny Road Meadow within our lifetime. It is irreplaceable."

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Wenny Meadow was originally created by the Dunn-Gardner family, who owned the Manor House in Chatteris, as the "Manor Park".

News reports show that it was regularly used for county shows, sports days and local galas throughout the mid-to-late 1800s and early 1900s, but its hidden history extends far earlier than that.

Save Wenny Road Meadow campaigners have been working to have the site designated as a local green space in Fenland District Council's new 'Local Plan'.

This week, the council revealed that 33 of the 46 public nominations for local green spaces to be added to the plan were nominations in favour of Wenny Meadow.

On Tuesday evening (February 4), the campaign group informed Chatteris Town Council that a paper-based petition supporting the retention of the meadow had gathered over 1,050 signatures from local residents, approximately 10 per cent of the town's estimated population.

President of Chatteris in Bloom, and former Chatteris mayor, Susan Unwin attended the latest demonstration with three generations of her family.

Mrs Unwin said "My sons used to play and make dens as children as did many of the children living close by. It's a lovely habitat for wildlife and a nice place to walk your dog."

She urged others to "become a tree hugger for the New Year and save the meadow".

"We are turning into a concrete town - notice how many trees and open spaces we have lost over the years."


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