Plans to bulldoze the Top Gear test track to make way for 1,800 homes will have to go to a public inquiry.
Campaigners who opposed the development of Dunsfold Aerodrome, in Surrey, have successfully taken the fight to the next level after Communities Secretary Sajid Javid opted to "call-in" the plans for a public inquiry.
The airfield has been home to numerous celebrities and many of the world's fastest cars due to its presence on the popular BBC motoring show since 2001.
Plans to demolish the site as part of a move to build new homes were approved by Waverley Borough Council in December, but campaigners have continued to fight over claims the local infrastructure cannot handle the extra population.
Bob Lees, Chairman of Protect Our Waverley, said: "We, and the thousands who protested against this proposal, are delighted. It is absolutely right that an independent view be taken of this application.
"The site was found to be unsustainable in 2008 and is still unsustainable."
The decision to call-in the application has been welcomed by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, who is MP for South West Surrey, and Anne Milton, MP for Guildford.
Mrs Milton said: "I remain concerned that local infrastructure cannot support a development of this scale in this location.
"I am very aware that we need new homes and in particular for those on lower incomes.
"However, those homes need to be situated in the right locations where the infrastructure, or anticipated infrastructure improvements can support them."
Supporters of the proposal said the 1,800 homes due to be built at Dunsfold, which make up the largest development planned in the borough for 100 years, are an essential part of the local plan for the area.
Julia Potts, leader of Waverley Borough Council, said she was "somewhat surprised and a little disappointed" at the setback, particularly given infrastructure commitments recently secured via negotiations with the applicant.
She added: "We need homes and we are going to need to look at developing near communities. This one ticks all the boxes."
When the development was given the green light in December, Top Gear fans were upset that the country was set to lose one of its most recognisable motoring venues.
Keith Lane, one of the 81,000 members of the 'Top Gear Fans' Facebook group, said: "At the end of World War Two, there were over 250 airfields in the UK and some of these have become motoring venues, like Dunsfold.
"However, many of these venues have now been re-purposed as housing. Eventually, there will be none left at all.
"There are now very few remaining for motorsport use, so it is vital that no more are built on. Stop all future redevelopment before it's too late."
The track is currently appearing in the 25th series of Top Gear, hosted by Friends star Matt Le Blanc alongside motoring journalists Chris Harris and Rory Reid.
A BBC spokesman, speaking in December, said: "We have long been aware of the planning application for Dunsfold Park, but do not anticipate this will impact on the filming of Top Gear at the site for the foreseeable future."