Controversial plans to build houses on a beloved village green have been submitted to Torridge District Council (TDC).

The proposals for the park off Avon Lane include demolishing the former Happy Cafe building, tennis courts and play area.

This will make way for 10 new houses, new tennis courts, a community building and a play area.

The site has been subject to a long battle between TDC, who wished to develop the land, and campaigners who want to save it.

Last year a public inquiry was held to try to designate the park as an official village green, but campaigners lost the battle.

The former Happy Cafe in Westward Ho!The former Happy Cafe in Westward Ho!

Since then, Westward Ho! Councillor Nick Laws has been leading the fight to save the park from development.

A 3,500-strong petition was handed into the district council, and Cllr Laws has been campaigning for the park’s ownership to be handed back to Northam Town Council to manage.

The new proposals, submitted by Atlantic Racquet Centre, include two full-size tennis courts and a mixture of three- and four-bedroom houses.

The design and access statement said the play area will remain where it is now but will be refurbished.

Westward Ho! park campaigners: Phil Hodson, Nick Laws (Westward Ho! councillor), Pam and Stewart Makeig-Jones. Picture: Sarah HowellsWestward Ho! park campaigners: Phil Hodson, Nick Laws (Westward Ho! councillor), Pam and Stewart Makeig-Jones. Picture: Sarah Howells

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