Campaigners say they are determined to raise enough funds to apply for a judicial review against the decision to grant planning permission for more than 700 homes near Bridport.

Advearse has launched a Crowdfunder appeal in order to raise funds to apply for a judicial review against Dorset Council's decision to grant outline planning permission for the Vearse Farm development.

The plans - approved last week, subject to conditions - also include a 60-bed care home, school, employment space, a small local centre and associated playing fields, as well as other public open space and allotments. It also allows for a new road access from West Road and new pedestrian and cycle links.

All of the details of the development, which lies on the edge of Bridport within Symondsbury parish, will have to be agreed at a later stage, when further consents are submitted.

Advearse has just six weeks to raise the remaining £16,000 it needs to challenge the council’s decision in court.

The group says its lawyers believe the planning consent can be challenged because, they allege, it contravenes national rules about building on an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

Residents have donated £8,800, to be match-funded by the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), of the £34,000 target required to proceed.

Advearse chairman, Barry Bates, said: "Local people are angry because their concerns about traffic and the strain on our infrastructure and medical and care services have been ignored by the council and because, despite the gross oversupply of expensive houses, the council plans to build all over the west Dorset countryside."

Outline planning permission was first granted by the former West Dorset District Council in November 2017, subject to further conditions being met and the submission of further details.

These included arrangements for a Section 106 agreement; used to mitigate the impact of a development on the local community and infrastructure

Developers have been instructed to submit a phasing plan, to allow the development to proceed on a phased basis.

Matthew Piles, Dorset Council corporate director for economic growth and infrastructure, said: “The final outline planning approval for Vearse Farm has been confirmed following the signing of a Section 106 agreement.

“This agreement provides significant infrastructure and community benefits, including affordable housing, a new primary school, financial contributions for the town’s leisure and medical centres, and improvement works at the Miles Cross junction.

“It was agreed between the council and applicant in strict accordance with our procedures, in the same way as any other planning application.

“The Vearse Farm site was designated for development in the West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland Local Plan in 2015, and this allocation was upheld by a planning inspector following a public inquiry into the Local Plan.”

For more information on Advearse and its campaign, visit