Plans to build a grass-roofed bungalow next to the coastal path and Boscawen Fields in Falmouth would "desecrate" the amenity area and set an undesirable precedent, according to local residents and town councillors who are demanding they be refused.

The outline planning application has come from Thomas Byass and relates to an area of land which was bought from South West Water at auction in 2013 by Tim Smithies and was previously home to the controversial Lendien Rocks cafe for a short time in that year.

The proposal, though, has attracted 145 objections from local residents and community groups, including the Falmouth Bay Residents' Association, the Boscawen Fields Action Group, Falmouth Civic Society, the Ramblers Association (Cornwall) and the Falmouth Neighbourhood Plan Stakeholder Group.

Some of them attended a meeting of Falmouth's planning committee last week to urge the town council to back their fight against the scheme. Lynn Newsham said the proposed development land was an "integral part of the green coastal corridor" and that Boscawen Fields had been gifted to Falmouth Borough Council by the Earl of Kimberley, to be kept as a public amenity space.

She added that the new home would be detrimental to the character of the area and pleaded: "For the sake of visitors to our town and the residents of Falmouth, I urge you to reject this application which desecrates this amenity area."

Also present at the meeting was Lisa Solly, who was acting as agent for the applicant, who said: "I appreciate there has been an overwhelming number of objections online, but what is clear is there does seem to be a perception this area is associated and integral to Boscawen Fields. It is not. It is privately owned and it's only because it's not fenced off that people are able to access it."

Ms Solly added that the proposed new home "could be seen as an enhancement of an underused and vandalised area of brownfield land."

Councillors did not agree, however, with Alan Jewell saying: "The building is probably not so bad, but it's where it is - in the middle of the most iconic piece of land in Falmouth. It would set a precedent. We have no choice but to turn it down."

Councillor Candy Atherton added: "Time after time people have said 'protect these fields.' It has been quite appalling to see this application come in. We have to think about the view from the sea - our harbour area around the bay is well used and the view would be completely different."

The committee voted unanimously to recommend that Cornwall Council refuses the application claiming it is contrary to policies within the emerging Falmouth Neighbourhood Plan; is an iconic and visually prominent site within close proximity of the AONB and if built on would set an undesirable precedent. It is also said there would be a detrimental impact on the greenspace when viewed from land and offshore and would lead to the loss of an established walkway.