Hundreds of houses being built on south Buckinghamshire beauty spots remains one of the biggest challenges for Wycombe District Council, according to the new leader who admitted defeat in her bid to keep the five 'reserve sites' unspoilt.

Conservative councillor Katrina Wood, who was elected as district leader last month, was vocal in her bid to keep Gomm Valley out of the hands of developers, but now says people must work together to ensure any housing is right for the community.

The Tylers Green and Loudwater representative said: "I fought very hard against getting them released at the time, I fought as long as I could until we got to the point of no return and obviously they were released.

"It’s been done, they’ve been released and we need to make sure we are working with residents through the liaison groups to get the best result for people on what they want in those areas.

"They’ve been released now and it’s not realistic to say what else you can do with them, they are so far down the line I think we need to continue the work which is being done there, have a look at it and see what comes out of the end of that.

"We’ve got very hard choices to make and not all of it comes from us, it is the things which come down from government that we have to deal with and I think we can put up a good fight and do the best we can, but we have to work within the constraints we are given.

"Yes, our youngsters do need houses around here, but it doesn’t mean I want to fill the Gomm Valley with thousands of houses - it’s a balancing act."

As well as Gomm Valley, Slate Meadow, Terriers Farm and Abbey Barn North and South were also released for development as the council aim to fulfil a housing target of between 500 and 700 dwellings a year.

Cllr Wood said the south Bucks countryside is was what attracted her 30 years ago to the Tylers Green and Loudwater area she represents and that she intends to do what she can to preserve the beauty of the surrounding areas.

Cllr Wood, who will officially meet the new cabinet on Monday, has also spoken about redeveloping brownfield sites in the county and says she would like to see places like Frogmoor rejuvenated.