Victory in planning war

Residents have won a victory against a developer who wanted to build an industrial estate and 285 homes on their doorstep. pictured Kevin Land
Residents have won a victory against a developer who wanted to build an industrial estate and 285 homes on their doorstep. pictured Kevin Land

RELIEVED residents are celebrating after winning a campaign to stop 285 homes and an industrial estate being built on their doorstep.

More than 550 objections were made to the plans submitted by Barratt Homes for farmland next to Dewsbury Road, and yesterday members of Wakefield Council’s planning and highways committee unanimously rejected the outline application.

Objections were based on the scale of the development, fears over increased traffic on Dewsbury Road and there were concerns that it would add to problems with flooding.

Kevin Land, of Woodland Rise, whose house would overlook the development, represented residents at the meeting.

He said: “We are delighted with the outcome and with the support we received from committee members. It’s a huge relief.”

Wakefield MP Mary Creagh was also among the objectors. The plans were originally submitted in February 2009, but were later withdrawn after they met with an angry response from residents.

The meeting heard how the developers had worked with the council’s highways department to try and address concerns raised about access to the site off Dewsbury Road, which would serve the housing estate and the industrial area.

But committee members said more work needed to be done.

Coun Geoff Walsh was among them. He said: “I’m hearing that research has been done, and I know that people are saying this will work, but there are lots of people who have concerns about it, and looking at the development, I support their views and find it difficult to contemplate approval.”

More than 21,000 homes are set to be built in the district by 2022 and the farmland is among a number of sizeable plots earmarked for development as part of the council’s local development framework, which aims to tackle housing and employment shortages among other things.

Others include 3,000 homes, offices and shops proposed by Spawforths in conjunction with Stretton Estates and Miller Homes, who plan to extend Eastmoor and the former Redcats site on Horbury Road has been earmarked for 134 homes and 193 homes could be built to the west of Pinderfields Hospital.

Ms Creagh MP, said: “This is a victory for common sense. I was concerned about the impact of the plans on highways and the increase in traffic. I’m pleased the council has listened to local residents, councillors and myself in rejecting the plans.”