A CELEBRITY quizmaster has lent his voice to a badger protection group’s campaign to halt a £3million development which threatens a badger sett.

Chris Tarrant, star of ITV show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, has spoken out against plans to build two six-bedroom houses on land adjacent to Longaford Way, in Hutton Mount.

Essex Badger Protection Group has been campaigning to convince Brentwood Council the plans should be shelved, as they threaten a badger sett on the land.

Mr Tarrant said: “Leave the badgers’ home alone.

“The council has a duty to protect wildlife. It must take its obligations and the wishes of the public into account and act responsibly. It mustn’t always be about money.”

The celebrity is the second famous face to be brought on board by the Protection Group – TV vet Emma Milne has also lent her support.

The campaigners have also started an online petition and gathered more than 2,000 signiatures.

Ralph Patmore, who lives in Challacombe Close, Hutton Mount, said the aim of the campaign is to keep developers Stone-bond Properties from building on the land and potentially destroying the badgers’ homes.

Stonebond hassaid, if planning permission is granted, it will build an artificial sett nearby to secure the badgers’ future.

A decision was due to be made last month, but was delayed while the council gathers more information.