A TURKEY was symbolically buried near a Mirfield school, at the centre of a controversial housing development.
Hundreds of residents opposing the plans for 30 houses in the grounds of Castle Hall School buried the frozen bird on a banking by a footpath and threw soil on the grave, to symbolise what they hope will be the end of the planning application.
The proposed development is the fourth application to be submitted by the school to Kirklees Council.
The burial came at the end of a march from the Gilder Hall youth club field in Wellhouse Lane and round the Castle Hall School grounds.
About 300 people attended the march, led by Scots piper, James Gall.
Mr Tim Conolly, who organised the protest, said: "The school needs a new sports hall, no-one would disagree with that. We want to support the school in achieving that aim. We asked to talk to the school and developers but they would not give us the time of day."
Castle Hall has teamed up with developer Magellan Residential Ltd, of Shepley, to submit plans for 30 houses on a plot of land at the Towngate end of the school playing fields. In return, the school would benefit from the deal with a £2.5m sports hall, all-weather pitch and tennis courts.
The school says it needs a new sports hall because student numbers have increased from 350 in the 1930s to 870 now.
Residents are alarmed that in addition to the loss of fields for houses, playing fields will be lost on the other side of the campus for the all-weather pitch and sports hall.
They claim there is already traffic chaos at peak commuter times and additional housing will exacerbate the problem.
Mr Conolly said people could understand the school wanting new facilities but felt there were better ways of achieving them than selling off land for housing.
Mr Norman Bridgestock, who lives opposite the site of the proposed estate said: "The traffic is already appalling. An extra 30 houses can only make it worse."
The planning application will be discussed by Kirklees Council on Thursday, December 4.
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