A DEVELOPER has submitted fresh plans to build 41 homes on a former mill site - just over a year after similar plans for the site were refused.

The Foreside Mill site just outside of Denholme has been the subject of housing plans since 2010. Last year Bradford Council refused plans by Stirling Investment Properties to build 42 houses on the site, saying “The factors in favour of the development are not considered to clearly outweigh the harm the development would cause to the greenbelt.”

That decision went to appeal, and a government planning inspector backed the Council's decision, saying the new homes would lead to “significant urban encroachment” on the greenbelt.

Now the company has submitted a similar application for 41 houses at the site, many of which will be classed as affordable.

Although the land had previously been developed, and the applications had referred to it as a brownfield site, it was classed as Greenbelt by the planning inspector that dismissed the appeal.

Developer told housing plan would harm 'openness' of Denholme's greenbelt

But the new application claims Greenbelt policy has since changed, and that, after initial talks, planning officers said the new plans are "likely to be acceptable"

The application says the new development will include 19 regular homes and 22 social housing units.

The mill was demolished in 2010 after plans to build 35 houses on the site were approved. But the houses were never built and planning permission lapsed.

The application says the layout of the houses would be different from previous plans, adding: "The main focus of development (will be) along the front of the site adjacent to Halifax Road and to the south adjacent to the existing buildings.

"To the north and west of the site is a landscaping buffer to soften the appearance of the development from the wider Green Belt.

"The site represents a sustainable location for new housing development and we are firmly of the opinion that any continued concerns regarding impact on the openness of the Green Belt would not be classed as substantial and would certainly not significantly or demonstrably outweigh the clear and substantial social, environmental and economic benefits provided by the delivery of affordable housing in this location."

Councillor Simon Cooke (Cons, Bingley Rural) said: "I know some people will not be desperately happy to have housing there, but I suspect in the long term that is what will happen there. Whether it is through this process or through the housing allocation process, I think it will happen. But they will have to prove exceptional circumstances to overcome the Greenbelt issue.

"I personally don't have an objection to this site being developed as long as it is good quality. If it is going to be done we have to be sure that it is a quality development."

A decision on the application is expected in July.