Controversial plans to build 41 houses on popular a Barnstaple beauty spot have been withdrawn.

Campaigners working to save Manning’s Pit from development celebrated last night after plans for 41 new houses were withdrawn.

In a statement posted on the Friends of Manning’s Pit Facebook group last night, campaigners said they are delighted but ‘must not relax our guard just yet’.

The post read: “Today we heard that the planning application for Manning’s Pit has been withdrawn!

“That’s a tribute to all the hard work and commitment that the community has put into opposing the application.

Mannings Pit at Pilton. Picture: Martin Haddrill.Mannings Pit at Pilton. Picture: Martin Haddrill.

“So, to everyone who put a poster in a window, wrote a letter of objection, signed a petition, attended a march or protest, bought a cake from a coffee morning or just cheered us all on - give yourself a pat on the back.”

The post urged people to keep posters up and continued: “It’s too early to say whether the threat to Manning’s Pit has now totally disappeared or whether it will re-emerge in some new form.

“Hopefully, the situation will become clearer in the next few days. As soon as we know more we will let you know.”

Pilton district councillors, Brian Greenslade and Mair Manuel, welcomed the news.

Protestors campaigning at a consultation over the Manning's Pit site.Protestors campaigning at a consultation over the Manning's Pit site.

In a joint statement they said: “This is a great victory for the community who rose up as one to say hands off Mannings Pit.

“We have worked closely with the Manning’s Pit action group and the enormous display of posters in Pilton and Bradiford demonstrate how people felt about these plans.

“The rejection of the proposals by Barnstaple Town Councillors also helped and our four town council colleagues Liz Davies, Val Elkins, Ian Roome and Bruce Vernon did battle on behalf of the community.

“While we can celebrate this victory we must all be alive to any other potential attempt to develop at Mannings Pit.”

The plans were initially submitted by Summix (Barnstaple) Developments LLP and at this stage it is not known why the proposals were withdrawn.

More as we have it.