DOZENS of people flocked to Bishopstoke to back a campaign against plans for thousands of new homes near ancient woodland and try to break a record.

There were 150 people at Stoke Park Junior School in an attempt to break the current record of 1,000 people dressed up as trees, which was set in Mumbai, India.

The initiative was organised by members of the action group Action against Destructive Development Eastleigh (ADD) in their battle against plans for 5,200 homes near ancient woodland between Bishopstoke and Fair Oak.

Organisers said many people did not attend the event which was run from noon until 2pm because of England playing in the World Cup quarter-finals in the afternoon.

But although the record of people dressed up as trees wasn’t broken, campaigners said the event helped to raise awareness.

Organiser Charlotte Adcock said: “Unfortunately we couldn’t compete with the football but it was a great day.

“We had an amazing tree-themed cake and people were delighted and really excited.”

The group has been campaigning against the plans which are part of the Eastleigh Local Plan.

Town bosses in Eastleigh backed the proposals for 5,200 homes between Bishopstoke and Fair Oak in December 2017, saying their choice was “the most logical option”.

But campaigners did not agree and are concerned about the impact the new homes will have on the River Itchen, ancient woodland and pollution.

Ms Adcock said the group was now working with experts to draw up an alternative plan.