Traffic, recreation ground and a “hub” at Burgate are areas that could be explored in a strategic plan being developed for Fordingbridge.

Fordingbridge Town Council is developing the plan for the future of the town, which was discussed at a meeting on July 6.

Cllr Mike Jackson told the meeting there were four main areas to look at, including the high street and traffic, which he said was a Hampshire County Council problem.

Another was the Recreation Ground, which Cllr Jackson said “needs revitalising”.

He also suggested the town council come up with specific projects and costings to see if extra Community Infrastructure Levy Funding from New Forest District Council was available.

The third area was looking at amenity land and whether responsibility should be given to the town council to manage those sites on new developments rather than a management company being brought in.

The final area to be explored would be a hub at Burgate. Cllr Jackson told the meeting that there was “a lot of potential” there for recreational use for joint school and town use .

However, concerns were raised by Cllr Malcolm Adams who said he had “reservations” and would prefer if more ground was purchased across the Recreation Ground for use by the general community and to also broaden the use of the area.

Cllr Pat Earth also questioned whether it would “take away things from the town” and “kill off the town by creating a new town at Burgate”. She also feared the Rec could become “obsolete”.

Cllr Pete White said the town council should still be bringing people from Burgate into Fordingbridge to enjoy the Rec and what is in the town and felt money should be spent improving facilities like the club house.

Responding to these concerns, Cllr Jackson said there was more land at Burgate and funding available pointing out that the population was growing by 50 per cent and facilities had to be found for both.

Speaking about devising a strategic plan, he said: “If we don’t do it we risk money coming in being spread in other parts of the district. We know we are probably at the bottom of the queue. We had more houses proportionally placed on us than any other town in the district. We need to be ready with projects we can say look we’ve had a greater proportion of population we want a bit more support.

“We need to have a plan we can put forward.”

Cllr Paton said the council needed to draw up a list of and prioritise where it wanted money spent most.

The strategic plan will be brought before the council at a future meeting for further discussion.