CAMPAIGNERS believe a decision to reject pleas for a controversial planning application to be determined in Bridport will make it "impossible" for some residents to voice their views.

Hayward and Co have submitted plans to demolish part of St Michael's Trading Estate to make way for housing, as well as refurbishing the site. Enterprise St Michael's, a group set up to try and safeguard the future of the estate, launched a petition earlier this month, calling on West Dorset District Council to hold the committee meeting to determine the application in the town.

After considering the request, the district council has decided the meeting will be held at South Walks House in Dorchester after no suitable venue could be found in Bridport.

Stephen Hill, strategic director at West Dorset District Council, said: “A number of potential alternative options for the meeting have been explored, but unfortunately none of these were suitable.

“Following discussions with Bridport Town Council, the chairman and vice chairman of the planning committee, it has been agreed that Dorchester’s South Walks House offers the most suitable facilities for what is anticipated to be a large public meeting.”

The council previously said that any venue would need to have microphones, a hearing loop, disabled access and car parking.

A statement released from the directors of Enterprise St Michael's, said: "Enterprise St Michael’s is concerned that West Dorset District Council have decided not to hold the future planning meeting about St Michael’s Trading Estate in Bridport, apparently on the grounds that Bridport has no building suitable for a planning meeting.

"We understand that it will take place in Dorchester instead. We are waiting for them to explain to us what is wrong with Bridport’s larger halls, but in the meantime what we can say is that a meeting held remotely from Bridport would make it impossible for many concerned Bridport residents to attend and make their points to the planning committee. "We may try to persuade the council to review their decision once we know their reasoning."