Newton Says No - Save the Wolborough Hills

by Newton Says No in Newton Abbot, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 3rd April 2019 we successfully raised £32,262 with 199 supporters in 23 days

Fund the legal challenge to stop the mindless destruction of the Wolborough Hills and the wildlife and habitats of the Decoy Nature Reserve.

by Newton Says No in Newton Abbot, England, United Kingdom

New stretch target

All funds are raised for the Wolborough Residents Association who are working in partnership with the Abbotskerwell Parish Council to stop the unwarranted and environmentally unsound development of the Wolborough Hills. All funds raised will be used to fight this appeal and any future planning applications, until the area is removed from the Local Plan.  

Newton Says No has one aim - to save one of the very few beauty spots in Newton Abbot, the iconic 'rolling hills' of Wolborough. The council, and the developers, want to cover it in concrete.

The area, designated NA3 in the flawed and outdated Teignbridge Local Plan, is undergoing a two-year environmental assessment that might just prove its unsuitability for development. PCL Planning and the landowner, more interested in making a quick £100m profit than following due process, are desperate to build 1,210 houses on the beauty spot and so have taken this to appeal. If they win, they can circumvent the assessment and start building. We need money to fight them. Please share our campaign and donate what you can now to help to stop greedy developers and Teignbridge District Council destroying this area forever.


In 2013 Teignbridge District Council controversially included this area of natural beauty on the edge of Newton Abbot in the Local Plan. Despite 7,000 objections at the time, TDC chose to dump the bulk of its inflated housing targets on Newton Abbot. The council knows that doubling the size of the town is against the wishes of local people, but have invited developers to build thousands of houses and concrete over the area forever.


The area under threat, the iconic 'rolling hills' of Wolborough, lies adjacent to the environmentally and ecologically sensitive Wolborough Fen Site of Special Scientific Interest. The additional 3,500 or more residents living in the new houses will also impact on the ability of Green Flag status, Decoy Country Park to cope with vastly increased footfall.

Wolborough Fen covers an area of 8 hectares and contains wetland plant communities that are rare in Southwest England. Development on the water catchment area threatens its survival, and only long-term scientific studies can determine whether it is safe to build.

The area for development contains a strategic flyway for the rare greater horseshoe bat that is part of the South Hams Special Area of Conservation (SHSAC). With more than 1,500 bats the South Hams stronghold is possibly the largest concentration of this species in the whole of Europe. It is unique. The flyways are essential for the bats to move between their roosts and Wolborough sits in a pinch point in the flyway network. Any erosion of this narrow bypass around Newton Abbot could have very negative consequences for the species.

Another victim of this development will be the Fourteenth Century Grade 1 Listed Church of St Mary the Virgin, which will lose its rural setting. Other large scale concerns include increased air pollution, congestion, strain on the NHS etc etc. The list goes on.


For the sake of the town, the region and all our futures, let’s do what we possibly can to keep this planning decision on the right side of history. Please share our message to your networks and donate whatever you can to the campaign to raise a minimum of £25,000 for legal fees. All funds raised are going directly to the Wolborough Residents Association and Abbotskerswell Parish to fight the appeal case starting on the 26th March and any others that might follow.


This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£250 or more

£250 Reward

Show your generosity to support the vast majority of people who want to halt this mindless destruction of habitats and wildlife.

£500 or more

£500 Reward

Know you did your level best to stop the confederacy of idiots obsessed with short term greed.

£1,000 or more

£1000 Reward

Be able to tell your children and grandchildren you did everything you could to be on the right side of history.

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