A CHURCH in Haworth can be converted into housing after plans were approved by Bradford Council.

The application to convert West Lane Methodist Church into five, three-bed homes was submitted by Tim Sharp in August.

It said the proposals would "provide the opportunity to secure the optimum viable use for the now redundant Methodist Church."

Turning it into housing would prevent the vacant building falling into disrepair, it added.

There had been a number of objections to the plans, raising concerns about traffic to the new homes, and claiming Haworth "didn't need more families."

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Objectors also said the village was losing its heritage, and one claimed the building should become a community based venture.

Planning officers pointed out that the building had no protections that would prevent it from being converted, and that there would be minimal changes to the building's exterior.

Council heritage office Jon Ackroyd said: "The loss of religious use is regrettable as this has been the historic purpose of the building and contributes to the blend of activities which would traditionally be found in Haworth. The ending of this use will break the continuity of this established activity.

"If this use is no longer viable however, the proposed use does afford some benefit in ensuring the buildings have a new sustaining use."