Objectors lose fight against development

PLANNERS have given the council permission to build 36 new affordable houses on White Lee Road – despite strong objections by nearby residents.

Thursday, 28th January 2010, 2:10 pm

The 36 new houses will be built on greenbelt land by Kirklees Strategic Housing, on behalf of the council, and will include a children's play area at the rear of the development. The majority of the properties will be three-bedrooms set across two storeys, however eight of the houses will have further rooms in the loft and a further four homes will have four-bedrooms.

At a meeting of the Heavy Woollen planning sub-commitee, several neighbours registered their displeasure at the development, believing they wouldn't fit in with the surrounding houses and bungalow.

Hearl Lenton, a chartered surveyor who spoke on behalf of his parents who live nearby, described the plans as 'alien' to the area.

"The scale of this housing is alien to the district and it will have a significant impact on the area. From a personal point of view, my parents live 100-yards away in a bungalow and the development would not fit in with the other properties in the area. These are all bungalows," he said.

The site was originally a cricket field before it was acquired under a CPO by Kirklees Council several years ago as a proposed site of a school before the latest application.

Kirklees' planning team received 16 telephone messages and 16 letters from residents concerned about the development, many of them were concerned about more traffic on the road, inappropriate size of the houses and an increase in crime leading to devaluation of houses in the area.

James Hinchliffe, representing Kirklees Strategic Housing, said: "We hope that this scheme will address the needs of the area and will provide some of the 1,500 affordable houses needed in Kirklees.

"The proposal is the culmination of work with the homes and community agencies and this scheme is very specific to meet the need for affordable housing in the district. We've put a lot of thought into this scheme and if the scheme is successful it would be the first affordable housing development to really make a difference here."

Committee members debated the virtues of the plan, which Coun Andrew Pinnock described as 'very significant and important', and ultimately supported the plan for the new houses.