Shipley MP Philip Davies has pledged his support for campaigners fighting plans to install a water turbine at historic Roberts Park in Saltaire.

In a letter to Sharon Ashton, chairman of the Friends of Roberts Park – which is strongly against the proposed turbine – Mr Davies stated his own opposition to the project.

“I very much agree with you about this issue and I will do all I can to help and support you,” wrote Mr Davies.

He will be asking Bradford Council to answer the arguments against the hydro-power scheme put forward by the Friends of Roberts Park, Saltaire Village Society and the Saltaire History Club.

“Mr Davies’s letter is a really positive thing for us,” Mrs Ashton said.

“Saltaire is a World Heritage Site and this is a plan to put in a big industrial turbine.

“We have felt a little bit like lone voices and so it’s good to have support from someone with such high profile as Mr Davies.

“At the moment we are waiting to see what happens when the planning application actually goes in, which is due to be early in the New Year.”

Mrs Ashton’s group is running an internet petition on Bradford Council’s website and also writing an online blog entitled “Saltaire Screwed”.

One of the other opponents, Saltaire History Club, recently declared its opposition to the proposal which member Dave Shaw likened to putting solar panels on the Pyramids.

The Council argues the £1.2 million turbine could cut carbon emissions by 23,000 tonnes over the next 40 years, and would “pay for itself” after ten years.

Roberts Park was set up by Sir Titus Salt in the 1870s and bought by Sir James Roberts in 1891. He then handed it to Bradford Council in 1920.

Descendants of both men have signed a petition to stop the turbine’s construction.