NEIGHBOURHOOD planning and sites not included in Calderdale’s draft Local Plan were debated at hearings into Brighouse, Hipperholme and Rastrick land allocations.

Planning Inspector Katie Child chaired the, virtual, ongoing, hearings into the plan this week.

David Collins, for Rastrick Neighbourhood Forum (RNF), said increasing Rastrick’s population by 33 per cent through a number of sites was not credible.

Consideration of the forum’s own proposals, which would reduce the population to a 15 per cent increase, had been rejected and the draft plan did not refer to RNF having a development plan, he said.

“Our development plan has been delayed by the inaction of the council to develop a Local Plan. The forum has tried to be actively engaged with the council,” said Mr Collins.

The council’s planning lead Richard Seaman said to his knowledge the Rastrick Neighbourhood Plan was at a relatively early stage and not yet subject to basic consultation, which impacted the amount of weight that could be given to it.

Impact of 10,000 new homes on Calderdale is discussed

Mr Collins said applications already moving forward were not including enough of the type of homes – one and two bedroomed – that Rastrick needs.

Among sites considered but then excluded from the plan, Mathew Sheppard made a plea for land where Old Brodleians rugby union club could develop facilities for increasing numbers of teams including women’s and junior sides to be included in the plan.

This is one of a number of sites that are affected by traffic problems at Hipperholme crossroads, some allowed but others not, a situation queried by Coun Steven Leigh (Con, Ryburn) and Coun George Robinson (Con, Hipperholme and Lightcliffe).

Mr Seaman said positions north or south of the crossroads affected allocation and highways officer Andrew Dmoch said it was a case of “the devil’s in the detail” regarding applications.