Campaigners fighting to retain Kings Pond in Alton are warning that the battle is far from won.

And some believe that having pro-pond candidates at the Alton Town Council election on May 4 could be crucial to their cause.

An amendment to the original recommendation put before councillors at the Kings Pond full council meeting held in the Alton Maltings Centre on January 18 ensured the public will be consulted again once the results of option studies are known.

Around 150 people attended the meeting, and a Save Kings Pond group on Facebook currently has 763 members.

After the meeting, Gordon Smyth said: “The public clearly care and have some really common sense solutions and ideas.

“My take on the outcome is that we have managed to delay the pond’s removal a bit.”

He felt Cllr Suzie Burns’ amendment stopped the council continuing with fisheries specialist Aquamaintain’s plan to separate Kings Pond from the River Wey but thought it was “a very close thing”. He added: “I believe this occurred because of the petitions and strong public feeling on the matter.”

With nothing due to happen before the election, Alison Dickson said: “There will be a new council by then so people who care about the pond need to put themselves forward.”

Heidi Reid added: “Independent candidates with their own thoughts might make a change.”

Stephen Gough said: “The councillors were left in no doubt of the importance to the people of Alton of Kings Pond.

“It is imperative that any ‘experts’ involved are truly independent, with no financial interest.”

Vicky Kuhn added: “They need to not make trying to answer the survey like trying to put together a 1,000-piece puzzle.”

Clarence De Courcy said: “I really hope this gets resolved and we keep the jewel, as said, for the people of Alton and surrounding areas.”