Bus station will be built

PLANS: The site of the proposed bus station and library.
PLANS: The site of the proposed bus station and library.
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HECKMONDWIKE bus station and library is still going ahead, says a town councillor.

Coun David Sheard (Lab, Heckmondwike) says Kirklees Council and Metro are still planning to build the state of the art facility in Royle Fold following rumours in the town the scheme had been axed.

He said: “We are working on the detailed designs of what we are going to build.

“The less complicated they are, the sooner we can get on with them.”

But Coun Sheard said the future of the scheme was subject to Kirklees’s capital budget, which would be firmed up in February next year.

He said: “No one party has overall control of the council so two parties have to agree it.

“We are at the whim of the other two parties.”

The scheme has been blighted by years of delays and concerns over funding during the recession.

Discussions between Kirklees Council and Metro were still going ahead last April, with members considering an affordable scheme.

The historic George pub and a row of shops, including Eastern Taxis, were demolished in July last year to make way for the new library and bus station.

Since then the land has been boarded up – and rumours have been circulating around Heckmondwike that the bus station and library facility would not be built at all.

At a Heckmondwike Business Alliance meeting last week, members heard the land could be used as town centre green space and parking instead.

But Coun Sheard said he had a meeting with Metro last Friday, who confirmed they had money earmarked from their budget to pay towards the development.

And he said a planning application had been resubmitted to the council as a formality.

He said: “We are working on the plans and talking to Metro about the designs and their contribution.

“I am doing everything needed to make sure it gets built and nobody has contacted me to say otherwise.”

He said Royle Fold had now been opened up to allow more parking in the town.

A Metro spokesman said: “We are working with Kirklees Council to look at delivering this project, complete with the bus station.