More than 150 residents found out more about controversial plans to develop land around the Grimescar Valley.
Thornhill Estates unveiled plans for a development dubbed the ‘Huddersfield Gateway’ at the beauty spot.
Developer Edmund Thornhill said there was lots of “constructive discussion” at the meeting last night.
However, concern has been expressed about the loss of open fields and a public meeting has been arranged for Wednesday, July 23 at Birchencliffe Cricket Club at 8pm to rally opposition.
The developer is initially focusing on plans for 200 houses on a provisional open land (POL) site and is expected to submit a planning application in the next few weeks for the housing.
However, they have a wider masterplan and want their land holdings to be included in Kirklees Council’s Local Plan, which could pave the way for wider development.
Resident Clive Thornby attended the drop-in session and said: “I don’t think the roads can take any more.
“Two hundred houses will bring a lot of extra traffic and they only seem to be focusing on the houses, not all the other elements they have planned so no-one can guess what traffic that will bring.
“But the planning situation with the council is worrying as they seem to be waving all these sort of applications through without any questioning.
“The council needs to remember they exist to serve the public and so they should listen to our views and fight for us.”
Clr Cahal Burke, Lindley Lib Dem, said: “I’m not convinced by it, there was a lack of detail and clarity about what’s going on in the future. I think they were pushing the 200 houses which is phase one and not giving much away about the rest.
“If we get this the gates to the valley will open and I think a lot of people feel that.”
Clr Burke also said that he feels Birkby residents need to understand the plan will impact them.
Mr Thornhill, managing director of Thornhill Estates, said: “I was pleased to reassure people that our proposals will see the Grimescar Valley enhanced, opened up for public access and developed sensitively.
“I was also happy to confirm that whilst the amount of land under our ownership amounts to 650 acres we have no intention of proposing development on any more than 100 acres and the remaining 550 acres will remain as it is.”
POL is land reserved for future development under the former Unitary Development Plan.
Thornhill Estates is now considering the feedback before submitting a planning application in the next few weeks.
Grimescar Valley housing plans: Opposition builds to developer's planning blueprint for 650 acres - see more here
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