Local grass-roots community organisation Kingsbridge has received a letter of support from the Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge Charity in connection with its campaign to protect local playing fields. 'Fields in Trust' has set a target of protecting 2012 playing fields by the end of the year. Kingsbridge has promised to protect the Holders Lane Playing Fields, under the scheme, but it has to have the lease to be able to do this. More than 5,000 playing fields have been sold off over the past 30 years, and this trend has to stop. Plans to develop the Holders Lane site as a College of Further & Higher Education have recently been uncovered, and Kingsbridge believes it is exactly this kind of situation that Fields in Trust sets out to prevent. Community Project leader Roger Lynch says "the Community doesn't want open green spaces built on to increase the empire of an ambitious multi-million pound establishment. They want these pitches put back into use, not sold off and fenced off." Local Councillor Martin Mullaney has disputed claims that the Holders Lane site will be sold, but Kingsbridge has evidence of an offer from University College Birmingham to buy the site at current market value. Even if this is no longer the case, as one resident said, "They're talking semantics here, whether the Council are selling the freehold or a lease for 50 years, the site’s not going to become public land again while I'm still alive!"
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