FLOODING in Aireborough has prompted an appeal for councils to think again about proposals to build hundreds of new homes in the area.

Swathes of Aireborough were left water-logged by the Boxing Day floods with a number of buildings affected and the cancellation of a football match at Guiseley AFC's Netherfield ground.

There were also dramatic scenes in Horsforth and Apperley Bridge where the River Aire burst its banks. In Horsforth crowds flocked along Newlay Bridge to watch the floods.

Aireborough Neighbourhood Development Forum Chairwoman Jennifer Kirkby said: "Aireborough is full of becks coming from the millstone grit hills: it is water that gave rise to the textile industry. Over the years many becks have been culverted, but have the courses of the becks and the culverts been properly maintained?

"The ANDF have been concerned for sometime about this and did a survey in the summer. One we are particularly concerned about is Wills Gill and both Guiseley Rectory and the 15th Airedale Scout Hut, which lie near its course had flooding problems. Then, much of the low lying land acts as a sponge for excess water the clue is in the name - Ing and Ley - the issue with the Leeds site allocations is these are the very areas they now want to build on with no plans for social infrastructure let alone the building and maintenance of sustainable urban drainage systems that prevents floods.

"The proposed Ings Lane development is on the Mire Beck alluvial plain -that's 300 houses. Over the road Bradford wants to build 100s more."

She said in 2014 Bradford's flooding expert told a judge there was next to no risk of flooding in the area, but Menston residents have spent hundreds of thousands of pounds and many court cases trying to prove otherwise.

She added: "No one should have been surprised Leeds got flooded with the Aire filling up the way it did Aireborough was just one catchment area that didn't catch and hold as it should.

"Leeds City Council and Bradford for that matter, needs to think again about its housing target and base it on need not aspiration, it needs to properly plan and cost the infrastructure including drainage and flooding, and it needs to think sensibly about how the City works - not build houses on flood plains, neglect environmental and land management and then blame others because the Aire floods the City, disrupts the transport network and causes misery for many at Christmas. It really is time to think again and listen to local people, not ignore us."