A developer is set to go head to head with villagers over plans to build nearly 100 homes on a greenfield site.

Gladman Developments Limited has submitted a new planning application to build 98 new houses on land to the east of Colchester Road in Bures Hamlet.

The developer’s previous plan for the site was rejected by Braintree Council back in June due to concerns about the impact it would have on the countryside setting.

An appeal was launched following the refusal and now Gladman has a entered a new planning application in a bid to reach an agreement with planning officers.

However, resident Ken Butcher has set up a petition in response to the developer's latest plans and has the support of more than 400 people who have signed.

The petition directly opposes Gladman's plans and seeks to protect Bures Hamlet from "overdevelopment".

A statement from Mr Butcher reads: "The application site, currently productive arable land, is outside the village envelope and it is considered sensitive by the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England (Essex), the Dedham Vale Society, and the Colne-Stour Countryside Association who believe that a successful application will seriously damage the chances of extending the Dedham Vale AONB along the Stour Valley to include Bures, Lamarsh and onwards to Sudbury.

"The area is deemed to be of national importance as it unites the areas made famous by the artists John Constable and Thomas Gainsborough.

"Many local residents have expressed concern regarding the scale of the proposal, and the additional strain that such a development would place on the village infrastructure."

More than 200 residents submitted letters of objection to Braintree Council over the original plans.

To appease concerns of planners and residents, Gladman's latest application includes building a mix of houses and bungalows, as well as creating extra garden space for existing residents living on Normandie Way, which backs onto the site.

Gladman has also provided greater details on the road layout and the design of a proposed recreational land, which will include sport facilities.

The developer's planning statement adds: "The site is suitable for residential development in terms of location and characteristics and it is not subject to any statutory or non statutory designations for landscape quality.

"The proposal would deliver on-site public open space and green infrastructure and would include a new children’s play area sited centrally as a focal point. The site has low ecological value. In addition to social and environmental benefits, there would also be economic benefits that would arise as a result of the proposal."

Braintree Council will have the final say on the application.