A CONTROVERSIAL plan to build 140 homes at a Hampshire beauty spot has sparked more than 200 objections.

Gladman Developments wants to transform green belt land beside Blashford Lakes Nature Reserve - despite claims the 11-hectare site could contain human remains.

Gladman’s outline application to develop an area off Snails Lane near Ringwood is due to be decided by the district council in March.

People living in the area say the scheme will create extra traffic problems, put extra pressure on schools and medical facilities and “decimate” local wildlife.

One of the objections has been lodged by Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust.

In a letter to the council it says the area includes one of the biggest expanses of floodplain grassland in Britain and supports a nationally important range of wetland bird species.

A large number of locals have also written to the council, including Clare Smith of Mockbeggar.

Her letter said: “This cannot be allowed to happen. Building at this location would be a disaster for local residents, a disaster for local wildlife and probably a disaster for the people who end up buying houses on a floodplain.”

Lucy Waterman, of Lawrence Road, Ringwood, added: “The roads are not equipped to sustain this many new houses.

“The doctors’ surgeries in Poulner and Ringwood are already too full and the same can be said of the schools.”

At least one of the objectors says the site could contain human remains and potentially hazardous waste, but no evidence to support the claim appears to have been put forward.

Gladman has defended the scheme, confirming that about half the 143 homes would be affordable.A statement issued by the company said: “The development would contribute to providing new housing and addressing the current shortfall in supply within the New Forest district.”

Proposals include a children’s play area, new wildlife habitat and a drainage basin which would retain surface water.The statement adds: “In the longer term the local economy would benefit from the provision of housing, investment in local infrastructure and services, additional expenditure on goods and services and additional council tax receipts.”