Hundreds fight to save Piggy Woods in Thatcham from housing

People living in Thatcham have reacted angrily at plans to sell a piece of ancient woodland for potential development. Credit: ITV News Meridian

People living in Thatcham have reacted angrily at plans to sell a piece of ancient woodland for potential development.

Campaigners fighting to save the area known as 'The Plantation' or 'Piggy Woods' say it's exactly the type of open space that should be kept during the pandemic as people spend more time outdoors.

Now a petition has been launched to save the woodland.

  • Report by ITV News Meridian's Mel Bloor:

Home to an array of wildlife including owls, hedgehogs and butterflies, The Plantation dates back to the 1700's when it formed part of the Dunston House estate.

Today (29/09) the woodland - which is also known as Piggy Woods - is used by the local community for walking and playing.

Sue Lister is one of hundreds of residents fighting to protect the site after it was put up for sale for 'potential development.'


We need this area. It's in the heart of an estate. There's plenty of roads we can walk around but actually people need trees and green space, especially during lockdown and all the restrictions on Covid-19.

Sue Lister- local resident

A petition has been launched calling on West Berkshire Council to put measures in place to prevent the space from being lost. 

A petition has been launched calling on West Berkshire Council Credit: ITV News Meridian

This is a precious resource for the people of Thatcham and of the district, so we're adamant that we would not want to see any development on this land at all.

Cllr Steve Ardagh-Halter- West Berkshire Council, Con

  • Cllr Lee Dillon- West Berkshire Council, Lib Dem

Government figures suggest that between March and June, almost 40,000 fewer homes were built as a result of Covid-19.

The land owner has been contacted for a statement in response to the petition but so far no one has got back to us.

A consultation is now underway following a request for a Tree Preservation Order on the site and the Local Green Space Status application will go out for consultation in November.