‘Disaster if new school is not built' in Horsforth

Councillor Chris Townsley

Councillor Chris Townsley

First published in Local news Wharfedale Observer: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

Horsforth could be facing disaster unless a new school is built to cope with an influx of children from new housing, it is claimed.

Coun Chris Townsley is warning that hundreds of additional children will be looking for places because of developments in the pipeline.

And he warned that with the area already running out of space, the only option soon would be “skyscraper” schools.

Coun Townsley spoke out as work is expected to start soon on more than 500 homes on the former Clariant and Riverside Mills sites, just off the ring road at Horsforth.

He believes the scheme, in conjunction with other nearby developments, will have a massive impact on the area. And he says that with the need for more housing land to be identified, the situation can only get worse.

“It is like Catch 22 because we are asked to find these sites for housing, but at the same time there are no additional schools being built.

“We are talking about hundreds of houses being built. They keep talking about roads, but infra-structure is more than highways. We have got to take action.”

Coun Townsley stressed the need to prepare for the impact of the Clariant and Riverside Mills development as well as potentially nearly 500 new homes at Woodside Quarry and about 1,200 homes at Kirkstall Forge.

He said: “With already bursting-to- the-seams schools, new housing sites with planning permission and an exercise to find more housing sites, we are heading for disaster unless something is done.

“I can’t get out there with a pick and shovel and build a school, but someone is going to have to,” he said.

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