ANOTHER public square revamp in Huddersfield has been hit by problems and huge delays.
Kirklees Council has committed £20,000 to improving the village square in Lepton.
Shop fronts are to be spruced up and the car park will be rearranged into a circle, taking the number of spaces from 24 to 30.
There will also be new benches and street lights and an ‘obelisk’ entrance feature.
The work was originally meant to be finished in August, but the council has now admitted it will not be officially opened until next spring.
Linda Wilkinson, Lib Dem councillor for Almondbury, has hit out at the delays.
She said: “I share the frustration of many Lepton residents with the glacial progress of the redevelopment of the village square.
“Already the original target completion date of the end of August has been and gone, as has the date pencilled in for the official opening at the end of October.
“This is the latest in a line of failures by Kirklees Council to complete building projects on time.”
Her criticisms follow the seven-month delay to the completion of the £4m overhaul of St George’s Square.
That project, started in May 2008, hit trouble in March – its original completion date – when contractors Wrekin Construction went into administration. Redevelopment was subsequently taken over by the council.
Clr Wilkinson added: “This project is not St George’s Square – no developer has gone bust and there are no expensive water features to plumb in.
“The state of Lepton Square is testament to this council’s straightforward inability to get things done on whatever scale.
“When I have pressed for an explanation I have received excuses ranging from long-term sickness to staff in one department blaming those in another.
“I can assure residents of Lepton that I am making urgent enquiries at the highest levels to find out who is responsible for this unacceptable state of affairs and, above all, to get the remaining work finished as soon as possible.”
A spokeswoman for the council said unforeseen problems meant the work was taking much longer than expected.
She said: “Poor ground conditions came to light when the work started and the renovations are therefore taking longer than planned as extra drainage has had to be installed.
“Landscaping and tree planting get underway on November 9 followed by surfacing and the installation of the obelisk entrance feature by the end of the month.
“The circular car park and LED street lights will make the area special.
“The design has been influenced by working with community group Lepton Link, local schools, youth groups, Scouts, local businesses, church and surgery.
“An official village opening celebration is being organised by Lepton Link and the council and will be planned for early spring.”