Haworth housing plan approved four years after being submitted

Friday, June 24th, 2022 10:08pm

By Chris Young, Local Democracy Reporter

Plans to build housing on a former mill site in Haworth have been approved – almost four years after they were submitted.

An application to develop the Ivy Bank Mills site was first submitted by K.M Norris in August 2018.

It would see either 33 houses or a mix of 30 retirement apartments and 17 houses built on the site of the mill.

Built in the late 19th century, the textile mill had stood derelict since the 1970s. A decade ago Bradford Council granted permission for the building, which lies in the Haworth Conservation Area, to be demolished.

Permission for housing on the site had previously been approved numerous times, but the homes never built.

The land has since been taken over by vegetation.

The latest application for the site was made in 2018, and said: “The rationale behind this application is to open a new chapter for the site and deliver a flexible, market facing consent which will allow development to take place.

“Viability issues have meant that previously approved applications have not come forward for residential development.

“The flexibility proposed within this application seeks to address these issues to ensure development of the site will follow planning permission.”

There had been a number of objections to the application, many of which date back to when the plans were submitted in 2018.

Many of these raised concerns about the access to the site, which will be through Ivy Bank Lane. Objectors said it was a totally unsuitable access road for a large development.

Others questioned whether the site, now covered with vegetation, could still be classed as Brownfield.

In the past four years multiple reports have been requested by the Council and submitted by the applicants, ranging from access arrangements to the possible presence of crayfish on the site.

The application has now been approved.

Highways officers said planned road improvements that will accompany any development, including changes to the junction of Bridgehouse Lane and Ivy Bank Lane, would mitigate any traffic issues created by the development.

When asked why the authority had taken almost four years to make a decision on the site, a Bradford Council spokesperson, said: “Most applications and amendments are considered in a shorter timeframe.

“However, the complex nature of this application with its location, conservation status and highways issues meant in needed a longer assessment period.

“The applicant amended the scheme in order to ensure it wouldn’t result in significant harm to neighbours, local visual appeal or the character and appearance of the Haworth Conservation Area.

“The impact on the local highway network also needed to be assessed.

“We are pleased planning permission has now been granted and will allow the housing development to proceed.”

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