Keighley residents win apology from Barratt Homes over housing signs (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Firm put up signs without consent from Bradford Council
Campaigners who have battled against a new housing estate have forced the developer to apologise for putting up advertising signs without permission from Bradford Council.
National house builder Barratt Homes has ordered contractors to tear down hundreds of green and white signs advertising the new estate, called Vision and on land off North Dean Avenue, Braithwaite, Keighley , after it emerged they had been put up without proper authorisation.
A spokesman for Barratt said: “As soon as we realised that our contractors had erected the signs without proper authorisation, they were immediately taken down. We are very mindful of minimising any disruption to existing residents, and we hope that they accept our sincere apologies on this matter.”
Braithwaite and North Dean Action Group (BANDAG), which campaigned against the development for years, forced the apology by bombarding the Council with letters, a spokesman said.
Spokesman Barbara Archer, of North Dean Avenue, said it had taken “months of complaints” to get Barratt to remove the signs, which started going up on green land and lampposts in Keighley in April.
“We reported this over and over again,” she said. “The authority only made Barratt take them down after many letters. In comparison, just before the last May bank holiday, an entrepreneur put up small banners around town to advertise his funfair at the back of Church Green. Within hours of these being put up the enforcement officer threatened a substantial fine if he did not remove all the banners.”
However, she said that when the group complained about a huge advertising board on private property, they were told by the Council that it would be allowed to stay because it is not illegal to put up such advertisements for short periods of time.
Another large advertising banner was also put on the fence at Merlin Top Primary School in School Road, Keighley on August 3, but that was removed shortly afterwards.
A spokesman for Bradford Council said: “We are investigating all the signs, some of which were on Council land and some which may need advertisement consent.”
Barratt Homes announced plans for the first raft of 190 homes on the controversial housing development last year. They are due to be completed this year.
The plans faced opposition from the residents as well as Keighley Town Council over traffic and flood fears.