Campaigners want to designate Portishead Lake Grounds as town green
PORTISHEAD Lake Grounds could become a designated town green in a bid to protect it from development.
The Lake Grounds Residents Association has applied to North Somerset Council to register the beauty spot as a town green.
Those making an application have to prove local residents have used the land for at least 20 years for lawful sports and pastimes.
Association members issued a questionnaire asking people how long they had used the Lake Grounds. The application was submitted to North Somerset Council this week.
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A spokesman for the association said: "The aim of the application is to protect the character and visual appearance of the Lake Grounds as they are now. Our survey showed the vast majority of people are against any development of the Lake Grounds.
"We believe it is full already with lots of activities. We do not have a problem with these activities, but do not want any more."
The move comes at the same time as Portishead Town Council is being asked to reconsider its stance on whether a skate park should be built at the beauty spot. In the past the town council has backed plans by the Portishead Skate Project (PSP) for a skate park on a section of land between the children's play area and the boathouse.
PSP already has permission for a skate park, which it was granted at appeal, but the consent runs out in November this year.
However its plans hit a stumbling block after an application for landlord's consent to North Somerset Council, which owns the beauty spot, was refused. PSP has reapplied to North Somerset Council executive member for property, Councillor Tony Lake, for consent to use the land after searches for an alternative site for a skate park proved fruitless.
Mr Lake has now asked Portishead Town Council if it wishes to reconsider its previous decision to support a skate park at the Lake Grounds.
The town council in place before the 2011 elections voted to support the plans by PSP, but as the composition of the council has since changed, a fresh view on the matter is now being sought and is due to be discussed by councillors tonight.
If town green status is agreed, it could effectively veto any plans for a skate park at the site.
Councillor David Pasley, who represents the Lake Grounds, said: "The application for town green status is something which has been led by the residents who want to protect the Lake Grounds."