Hundreds object to plan for 260 new homes at Wakefield town’s green belt

Campaigners have vowed to battle against a plan to build up to 260 at green belt land in Wakefield district town.
The site for the homes off Wakefield Road in Hemsworth. Picture by GoogleThe site for the homes off Wakefield Road in Hemsworth. Picture by Google
The site for the homes off Wakefield Road in Hemsworth. Picture by Google

A total of 238 people have so far lodged objections to the outline planning application for land east of Wakefield Road in Hemsworth.

Hemsworth Parish Council criticised applicant Banks Property’s consultation process with residents.

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In a letter, the council said: “The developers’ events were highly structured and closed events with the applicant unwilling to consider significant changes to the number of homes on the development, the type of homes, and the site’s overall configuration or layout.

"We believe that the developer’s proposals are driven by returns on investment rather than, as they claim, providing ‘new housing to meet the needs and aspirations of new residents and wider benefits associated with housebuilding which will support the economic prosperity of the local area’.”

It concluded: “The proposed development of the land east of Wakefield Road known as the LP21 site is not a good match to the housing needs and aspirations of local residents.

“Nor will the LP21 development provide net positive economic benefits to the locality.

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"Any gains would be very small and likely offset by negative externalities resulting from traffic congestion, poorer access to primary care services and other public services, as well as the loss of public amenity and diminished environmental quality.”

Hemsworth MP Jon Trickett said: “I have consistently campaigned against the development.

"Our green belt - its wildlife and greenery - is precious and in any case with 20,000 families in the waiting list we need affordable houses not even more executive homes.

"It is deeply unfortunate that a government inspector approved the scheme. But then, the Conservatives never cared about our area.

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"There is still a chance to win some concessions and I urge everyone to write to Wakefield MDC opposing the scheme.”

Banks Property said: ”Our intention is to deliver a secure and sustainable development of modern family homes in a safe, green and welcoming environment.

"We will achieve this vision through careful design and communication with the local authority without preconception of the possibilities for this site.

"The site provides significant benefits including the provision of substantial areas of green space which incorporate a network of green pedestrian routes.”