Developer defends plan for 260-home project in Hemsworth as protesters lament loss of one town’s ‘last green spaces’

Campaigners turned out in droves to protest against plans for a 260-home development in a Wakefield district town.
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The homes would be built on an area of land off Wakefield Road in Hemsworth.

Campaigner Julie Outram said: “It will be absolute devastation to one of the last green spaces in Hemsworth if planning is approved.

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“We are the second most deprived part of the distric. We know there is a need for social and affordable housing but not at this busy site on Wakefield Road.

Julie Outram at the protestJulie Outram at the protest
Julie Outram at the protest

“We cannot cope with a huge development like City Fields in Wakefield. Our infrastructure cannot cope with what they want to do.

“With one access road for 300 homes it’s an accident waiting to happen.”

The plans received around 240 objections on Wakefield Council’s planning portal.

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Developer Banks Property said the plans are not on the green belt and would benefit the area.

Protesters gathered at the siteProtesters gathered at the site
Protesters gathered at the site

Kate Culverhouse, community relations manager at the Banks Group, says: “There is a clear and increasingly pressing need across the UK to increase the available supply of quality homes, including in this popular part of West Yorkshire, and we firmly believe that people should have the opportunity to stay in or move to the places where they wish to live.

“Our proposed development site was allocated for housing by Wakefield Council within the Local Plan that was adopted earlier this year and is not within the green belt.

“It provides a wholly suitable location for the type of high-quality housing that we’re looking to deliver, with its proximity to schools, shops and other local services making it a logical northern extension to the existing community.

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“We’ve worked hard to share as much information as possible about this project across the local community over the last eight months and are grateful to everyone who has given their support to our proposals, including those who’ve already said they would be keen to buy a home in the new development.

“This development would deliver a wide range of employment, environmental, economic and social benefits to the local area and we hope Wakefield Council’s planning committee will recognise the many merits of our proposals when it comes to consider them.”