Bradford Council ‘shoddy’ as Menston campaigners’ £25,000 study goes unread (From Wharfedale Observer)
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Bradford Council ‘shoddy’ as Menston campaigners’ £25,000 study goes unread
7:00am Sunday 3rd November 2013 in Local news
A campaign group opposed to large housing developments in Menston wants to take its case to the Local Government Ombudsman over claims it has been unfairly treated.
Menston Action Group (MAG) was said to have been left “incensed” by Bradford Council’s responses to evidence it submitted against the plans to build houses on Bingley Road and Derry Hill.
MAG members learned this week the council has now fully approved the planning application for 173 houses at Derry Hill, as a required Section 106 agreement has now been completed.
And Bradford Council’s Regulatory and Appeals Committee recently agreed to approve the alteration of planning conditions connected with drainage of the Bingley Road site – where developer Taylor Wimpey has outline permission for 135 houses.
But MAG was dismayed evidence it collated on flooding and drainage was not heard at the committee meeting.
It paid £25,000 for a flooding report but the committee did not examine it at its meeting.
The council’s solicitor advised members that MAG’s evidence was “very technical” and the committee would not have the ability to go through this information.
MAG wants to see its evidence examined by an independent inspector.
In its newsletter, the group says: “The committee showed a complete disregard for the due process by not giving the panel members the evidence submitted by our flooding and drainage team, which had been supplied to Bradford Council’s solicitor well in advance of the meeting.”
It says letters of complaint have already been sent by Menston Parish Council and ward councillors.
Dr Steve Ellams, of MAG, said: “There will be some letters going off to complain about the shoddy treatment.”
Dr Ellams says MAG was also unhappy about the way campaigners were informed about the Derry Hill plans being signed off. Two villagers received an e-mail last week about the decision but letters were not received by key campaigners for several days.
The organisation is unhappy about the whole planning process surrounding the two housing plans and wants the Local Government Ombudsman to get involved.
MAG has now posted its flooding report online for residents to read. To see the full report go to menstonvillagewharfedale.com.
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