Discussion Forum

Bluebell Woodland Planning Application

Posted by Dave Armstrong
Friday, August 5, 2005

Despite the planner's flat recommendation for refusal, a certain councillor (who has previously pledged his full support behind the objectors) has insisted that this application goes before a full planning committee. Normally, when the planner reccommends refusal, applications do not have to go to committee and are refused.

Why this councillor has insisted on this is beyond comprehension if they value the Calder Valley above private developer's personal greed.

The refusal recommendation is due to the following very important reasons:

  • The site is valuable floodland - important to Mytholmroyd
  • A green belt
  • Green corridor
  • Will detroy valued wildlife - bats, kingfishers etc
  • Destroy vast number of mature established protected tree
  • Destroy woodland of high visual amentity in village centre
  • Affect a well used right of way frequented by local ramblers

I will advise of the committee date/time over next few days. Any support at the meeting would be very welcome.

Posted by Dave Armstrong
Friday, August 19, 2005

Excellent News to report!

The application went to Calderdale Planning Committee on Tues 16th August.

Following excellent and well researched presentations by the objector's representative - Graham Woodward, and Hebden Royd Councillor Christine Brampton Smith, Calderdale supported our objections and the application was rejected unanimously. Main objections were loss of floodland plain, destruction of woodland habitat & loss of wildlife, loss of local amenity and loss of visual amenity.

We would like to thank all those who have given up their time and supported our campaign. In particular Christine Brampton-Smith, Alan from the Rambler's Assoc.

Posted by Andrew Hall
Sunday, August 21, 2005

The news that the planning application has been rejected is excellent.

However, before being too self-congratulatory, do remember how developers work. It is rare that they just walk away from a rejected planning application.

My experience is that the first planning application can almost be submitted in a 'tongue in cheek' sort of way - i.e. the scale and nature of the application is so outrageous that even the developers don't think it will be approved. All it does is galvanise the opposition into action, in terms of campaigning, contacting local councillors and experts etc etc, usually, but not always, successfully.

This is the danger stage, because the action group can think their job is done, but in truth, the developer's actions to date are only paving the way for their real intentions.

Two things can then happen. The developers can submit a scaled down application, which, because it is less outrageous than the first, dilutes the opposition. They may do this a couple of times, slowly eroding any resistance.

Secondly, they can go to appeal on each application. This can be a costly business for the local authority with limited resources, and developers know this.

I hope this will not be the case with the bluebell woods. But it is as well for everyone to be on their guard and be aware that development of the site may still be on the agenda.