Keighley school to erect fence to keep out 'miscreants'

Wednesday, February 16th, 2022 4:58pm

By Chris Young, Local Democracy Reporter

Holy Family Catholic School's grounds have been open to the public since the 1960s but it has been given permission to install a fence around the boundary.

In an application to build a new fence, the school said an increase in anti-social behaviour and drug use by people entering school grounds meant the three hectare site now had to be closed off.

The application said: “PE lessons in the grounds are regularly disrupted by strangers passing through the grounds.

“Miscreants are being increasingly assertive about their ‘rights’ to use the school grounds.”

But the plans to erect the fence have also hit barriers. Originally the proposals were for a 2.4 metres palisade fence. Conservation officers said such a fence would prove “oppressive” and could harm two neighbouring Conservation Areas – Cliffe Castle and Devonshire Park. This led to Bradford Council refusing the application last year.

The school responded by re-designing the plans, swapping the palisade fence for a mesh fence.

This new application has now been approved by Bradford Council.

Planning officers said: “The school now proposes a green mesh paladin type fence which will appear less harsh than the previously submitted palisade fencing. This type of paladin mesh fence is common around many schools in the District so it is clearly workable as a solution to school safeguarding needs whilst not creating such a stark, unwelcoming feature.

“The appearance will result in a relatively modest impact on the character and appearance of the nearby conservation area but the proposed fencing offers benefits in terms of security and these are important public benefits which outweigh the more limited harm to character and appearance of the Conservation Area offered by the new design specification.”

 

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