Alverthorpe village green saved


A historic village green has been saved after a backlash against plans to bulldoze the site to make way for a housing development.

Wakefield Council has scrapped plans to sell Alverthorpe Village Green to housing developers after hundreds of people signed petitions to protect the site.

The green has been used for village events since the 1800s and was formerly the venue of Alverthorpe Maypole.

It is also loved by dozens of youngsters at Batley Road Play Group, at the nearby Phoenix Centre, who use the green for nature walks and exercise.

Wakefield Council said the site had been identified as a potential site for affordable housing, and launched a public consultation on the proposal.

However, council bosses wrote to villagers this week saying their proposal to dispose of the land had been withdrawn after a campaign to save the green was launched.

Judith Badger, Wakefield Council’s director of finance, property and resources, said: “Following feedback from local residents we are no longer planning to sell Alverthorpe Village Green.”

More than 300 people signed petitions against selling the green off after the council announced the plan last month.

Now the green, which is the only piece of common grassland in the village, could be taken over by a community group after the council decided to look into alternative options for the site.

Mrs Badger added: “We are in discussions with interested groups about how they can take a more active involvement in the maintenance of this site for community use.”

Lifestock and local produce markets were held at the green in the 1800s and 1900s, and the site has continued to be used for village events.

Jack Westmoreland, one of the campaign organisers, said: “They said the green could be put into community trust.

“That would probably mean we would have to maintain it ourselves.

“I think people would be prepared to do that.”