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Villagers oppose new show site

DORSET VILLAGERS are outraged at plans to hold one of the year's major championship dog shows near their homes. Residents at West Holme near Wool, Dorset fear that up to 12000 exhibitors could attend the show if planners give the go-ahead for Bournemouth Canine Association to relocate their annual event from its regular venue in the New Forest.

In an application to Purbeck District Council the Association outlined its plans to stage its three-day Championship Show around the second weekend of August 2002. The application has been debated by councillors at their planning board meetings in recent weeks.

The proposal would mean the use of fields between the villages of West and East Holme and south of the main Wool to Wareham road. The Association has applied for the change of use of the land from agricultural to show ground for 21 days in a year. This is the maximum period it needs to cover setting up and clearing away the ground before and after the show - and to improve access.

According to a report in the local newspaper The Dorset Echo, residents have protested in strong terms to the council, listing a number of points in support of their opposition of the show. Interestingly, however, the residents seem to be under the impression that more than one event is to be staged on the land in question, although only the dog show has been cited as a scheduled event. The residents have protested that:

• The small lane which provides access to the field would not be able to cope with the increase in traffic that regular use for dog shows and events would bring.

• The increase in traffic and noise of the events would impact negatively on the small community of West Holme. The residents added: "An attraction like the dog show proposal would not only disrupt local life and the environment but would irrevocably change it for the worst."


Meanwhile, Dorset County Council officials have called for more information from the Bournemouth Canine Association on the proposed field access improvements.

Earlier this week Bournemouth CA issued the following statement, 'At its recent committee meeting Bournemouth CA discussed the refusal of Purbeck District Council to grant planning permission on its proposed new ground.

The committee voted unanimously to submit a fresh application in a revised form and it intends to keep the dog press informed of developments'.