PLANS to build 62 homes at Astley Cross have take a step forward after winning outline planning permission.

The Bovis Homes application to build between Pearl Lane, Areley Common and Malvern Edge Court was approved by seven votes to four at a meeting of Malvern Hills District Council's northern area development management committee at a meeting last night - with two councillors abstaining and one absent.

It will cause anger among Astley Cross and Areley Kings residents, however, who campaigned against the plans citing infrastructure, traffic and flooding concerns and despite being a development decided by Malvern Hills, the effects on infrastructure, such as schools and doctors, will be felt in Wyre Forest.

Labour Wyre Forest district councillor Jamie Shaw said he feared the approval could be even more significant as it could set a precedence and encourage developers to try it on with other green fields in the area.

Gaining outline planning permission means the issue of whether or not the land can be developed for housing has now been won by Bovis Homes but the diggers won't be moved in straight away and the firm still needs to iron out the details, such as access and drainage.

Mr Shaw said it was this area that campaigners could still halt the development.

"The only thing that would prevent the site being developed now would be if those details like drainage could not be resolved satisfactory," he said. "The big issue is drainage and that will need a lot of work to make it satisfactory."