Bradford Council has admitted it is storing construction waste without planning permission, describing it as “regrettable” but necessary.

Last month, the authority applied for planning permission to store up to 4,100 square metres of earth and waste on an area of Council-owned land at Parry Lane, off Bowling Back Lane.

The materials have been dug up from the under-construction Westfield development, on the Broadway site in Bradford city centre.

The plan is to re-use the materials on future Council projects.

Despite the application being weeks away from being approved, wagons began delivering waste to the site on Wednesday. A notice on the fence surrounding the site says interested parties can give their views on the application until the end of February.

The application is for the storage of waste for 12 months and says the land is too contaminated to be used for landfill reclamation.

The original plan was for the material to be used for projects at Wilsden Road and Sugden End, but both sites have recently become unavailable.

A Council spokesman said: “The construction work on the Westfield site is progressing rapidly, with the most urgent task now being the removal of the soil and associated material used to form the Bradford Urban Garden.

"Storing the land at Parry Lane will reduce delay to the scheme, prevent Council costs of £120,000, which would be caused by sending the material to landfill, and negate the need to buy new materials for Council projects.

“A planning application has been submitted and will be considered as soon as possible. There are not expected to be any major issues with granting planning permission, but measures have already been put in place to minimise the impact on local residents until the material is recycled for other projects later this year.

“The material is being tipped as far as possible from neighbouring houses on Buller Street, with lorry access restricted to Parry Lane itself. The height of the tipping will also be less than the existing piled rubble already on site. Measures will be taken to reduce dust and mud until the material’s reuse and these will be kept under review.

“It is regrettable that we have had to do this while planning permission is still being considered, but this approach to storing the material until its reuse is in line with our commitment to promote recycling and sustainable development and to deliver the £260m Broadway investment along with its 2,500 jobs.”

An Environment Agency spokesman said: “We haven’t been made aware of this, but it is something we could advise the Council on if needed.”

Local resident Ian Morton said: “The consultation on this application hasn’t even ended yet. It’s not on.”

Coun Glen Miller, leader of the Council’s Conservative group, said: “If a private business was doing this the Council’s enforcement team would be all over them. It shows the Council can’t think more than eight weeks in advance. They should have had this all sorted before Westfield re-started.”