CHANGES to plans for 28 houses on a plot of land in Harden have been approved by councillors.

Skipton Properties already had outline planning permission for the development on a green field off Keighley Road but more detailed plans were refused by Bradford Council’s Regulatory and Appeals Committee in July.

Then councillors refused the scheme because the company said it was not viable to include affordable homes in the development.

The company instead suggested increasing contributions to the community under a section 106 agreement and after consultation with Harden Parish Council, planning officers and members of the community, these were accepted by councillors on the committee.

As part of the application the following contributions will be made:

  • £46,708 to Harden or Cullingworth Primary Schools
  • £31,893 to Harden Memorial Hall
  • £16,166 towards the provision of new allotments in Harden
  • and £20,419 for recreation infrastructure on the St Ives estate.

In addition, there will be provision for open space as part of the development and Skipton Properties will contribute to highways works to increase visibility for the exit of the site.

Councillor Kay Kirkham, on behalf of the parish council, told the committee: "Thank for refusing the application last time. The three reasons we had for objection have been addressed and this is a significant step forward.

"A fruitful discussion with the agent reinstated the Section 106 agreement with benefits."

She said the parish council did not object to the application as it existed but said Bradford Council's core strategy lessened the provision of affordable housing because of the viability assessment.

An agent for the developers said Skipton Properties would look at including cherry trees in the landscaping plan to replace existing landmark blossom trees and also amend the position of a hedgerow to be planted at the rear of Harden Fisheries to ease fears about access to utilities raised by the owner.

The proprietor of the 120-year-old business, Lorraine McClelland, said she was concerned about her utilities which are laid across the field and that she might need to access at any time of day or night.

She also expressed fears that yellow lines planned for Keighley Road could add to congestion outside the fish and chip shop, particularly during the school run or when deliveries are being made.

Councillor Simon Cooke suggested her concerns could be addressed by the Shipley Area Committee which will look at that part of the plans.

Malcolm Day, a former Council planning officer, told the meeting that he felt some of the houses on the plan were too close to trees on the boundary with the St Ives estate and the situation would likely lead to pressure to prune the trees.

He called for tree preservation orders because the woodland was presently unprotected but councillors were told the Council's trees officer was happy with the position of the proposed homes.

Cllr Kirkham said after the meeting that the parish council were looking at a shortlist of sites for allotments after being presented with a petition by interested residents.

The village's previous allotments were built on in the 1950s or 1960s.