Campaigners have warned an area aiming to be the most futuristic suburb in the country could lose one of its last links to the past.

Sutton Council wants to demolish a Victorian cottage called The Lodge, in Hackbridge, in order to build five new homes, but plans have been met with opposition from residents.

Hackbridge is aiming to be the UK's first sustainable suburb, which will see new eco friendly homes and open spaces created as part of the One Planet Sutton plans.

But Hackbridge and Beddington Corner Development Group has found itself at loggerheads with the council over plans to destroy The Lodge.

The group has launched a campaign to save the cottage, which was a gateway to a vast Victorian estate known as the Culvers Estate.

An amateur historian from the area, Francesca Bellucci, said: "According to the history books and local residents' memories, Hackbridge was a wealthy area with factory and mill owners, but this heritage has long since disappeared."

Ordinance Survey maps show the The Lodge was built between 1868 and 1895 and was owned by John Peter Gassiot Junior in the late 19th Century.

The Gassiot's were famous wine merchants who founded Martinez Gassiot and Co, and research by Miss Bellucci has uncovered John Peter Gassiot junior is buried in Sutton Cemetery.

Bob Steel, author of the newly published River Wandle Companion has joined the campaign to save the building.

He said: "The council will always be able to use the excuse of a few more houses here and there to demolish anything of value; we want to ensure we have assets of historic interest to pass on to our children; not just the big buildings, but humbler buildings like Culvers Lodge which also have a valuable role in our history."

Councillor Jayne McCoy, chairwoman of the economy and business committee said: "The Lodge offers an immediate opportunity for the borough to embark upon a scheme to build new council homes."

"We are also aware that some local residents who are members of the Hackbridge and Beddington Corner Neighbourhood Development Group have expressed concerns about the proposals because they believe the building should be retained. We will continue dialogue with the forum about the way forward."