Residents fear that Ainley Top could lose its last remaining green belt under plans for new homes and an industrial site.
The council’s Local Development Plan (LDP) proposes allocating a triangle of land between Brighouse Road and New Hey Road for about 66 new houses and a larger field bounded by Brighouse Road, New Hey Road and the M62 for employment use.
The land earmarked for employment use was previously chosen by turbocharger firm Cummins Turbo Technologies as the site for a new factory – but the company ditched its plans a year ago in favour of redeveloping its existing premises at St Andrew’s Road, Turnbridge.
Ainley Top residents have been urged to oppose the new proposals – with a handout distributed anonymously warns that if the LDP was approved it would result in “the elimination of the only green belt area left in the village."
It said the LDP made no mention of any investment in infrastructure such as roads, schools, doctors, dentists, adding: “It goes without saying that the impact on the already stretched existing infrastructure would be significant and affect everyone.”
Public comments on the plan have to be received by the council by 5pm on Friday, September 29. Councillors are expected to vote on the LDP in December before submitting it for approval to the government. The LDP will set out the council’s planning strategy for the next 16 years.
Objectors said: “If approved and subsequently ratified by the government in 2018, this would give the green light to all developers and we could see planning applications submitted as early as 2018.”
The handout said: “The views of residents are so important in this process as it is the only way to show the council the extent of local feeling. The more people who make their concerns known the better, After September 29, it will be too late.”
Commenting on the site earmarked for employment use, a consultants’ report to Calderdale Council released last month rated the site as “good”. It said: “The site is in an attractive location that is readily accessible to the motorway network. It is accessible to labour markets in Brighouse, Elland and also Huddersfield in the adjacent Kirklees local authority area.”
The LDP proposals follow a series of developments in the local area – including major housing schemes at Lindley Moor and developer Stirling Scotfield’s £15m Summit 24 Business Park scheme for several industrial units on land at Lindley Moor Road.
Calderdale LDP can be found at www.calderdale.gov.uk/local plan, which includes a guide on how to comment. A paper copy is also available at Elland library where a planning officer will be on hand from 10am to 1pm on Thursday (Sept 7) to help people comment online. Comments can be made in writing to Calderdale Planning Services, The Town Hall, Crossley Street, Halifax HX1 1UJ.