A public meeting to discuss the future of the Lower Field at the King Edward VI Community College (KEVICC) has been arranged for 17 June at Totnes Civic Hall at 6.30pm. 

The meeting has been called following KEVICC’s plans to sell 14 acres of school playing fields, green space, woods and publicly important buildings for housing/commercial development. The land is now officially for sale on the open market and the newly formed campaign group – “Why This Field?: Save KEVICC Lower Field” –  fear that the land will be sold to commercial developers for housing and the space will be lost to the community.

The meeting has been called by the campaign group so that the local community can be informed about the plans to sell 4 acres of the Lower Field and Elmhirst Building. The head teacher and school governors have been invited to the meeting to set out their plans in more detail. Totnes Town Council has also been invited to set out their plans to try to purchase the Lower Field to protect and enhance it as an amenity for the community. The local MP, Anthony Mangnall, and the county councilor for Totnes have also been invited to the meeting. 

Local residents have expressed deep concerns about the potential sale of Lower Field. The field is widely used by the community and the school providing much needed green space for walkers, families, young people, local sports organizations and visitors and it provides direct access to the River Dart. The area also includes the historically significant Elmhirst building, as well as an all-weather sports pitch that is used by a variety of organizations.

Totnes Town Council have prepared a £2.5 million bid to purchase the top part of Lower Field to protect this important amenity for the people of Totnes and KEVICC students and the campaign group are supporting this move as the best solution to protect the land for community use.

Lisa Smallridge from “Why This Field?” said, “It is vital that Lower Field is saved for the community, and we hope that the school governors will be receptive to the bid made by the town council. Totnes has few green spaces and taking this away to be used for housing development would be a tragedy. We implore the school governors to do the right thing for the common good. Once it is gone it is gone forever.”

Paul Wesley, a long-standing local resident who will chair the meeting, said, “It is important that everyone with an interest in what happens to the field hear all sides of the issue and that there is transparency and openness. We also need to hear from the town council on its potential bid. This is vital given the concerns raised by residents about KEVICC’s intention to sell this much-loved field.”

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