MORE than £1,000 was raised in a single evening for a fighting fund to oppose development on Aireborough greenbelt.

The money was donated during a public meeting to look at green belt policy and the Leeds Site Allocations Plan. It will be used to help pay for a legal challenge which is being mounted by Aireborough Neighbourhood Development Forum.

The forum launched its legal battle in August by lodging a claim for a judicial review with the High Court in Leeds. It is opposing Leeds City Council’s Site Allocations Plan which it says will threaten green space on Ings Lane, Wills Gill, Hollins Hill, Guiseley, and Victoria Avenue, Yeadon.

Forum chairwoman Jennifer Kirkby told the meeting Leeds City Council had not looked at the importance of the “natural capital” of the land such as flood prevention or the strategic importance of landscape character to the area.

She said Aireborough had a need for smaller properties and the forum had suggested ways for these to be accommodated on smaller brownfield sites - but these did not count towards the 3 per cent Aireborough target.

The meeting was also addressed by David Cove, Chairman of the West Yorkshire branch of the Campaign to Protect Rural England. Input at the meeting also came from prospective parliamentary candidates, forum members, ward councillors and Guiseley and Rawdon Labour Party.

The forum still needs £20,000 to fund the legal challenge and is asking that at least 4,000 households give £10 to spread the cost. Residents can also make pledges by emailing for a pledge letter to complete.

After the crowdfunding appeal was launched a Leeds City Council spokesman said independent inspectors had concluded that the Site Allocations Plan was sound and legally compliant.

He added: “Every area of Leeds is included in sharing the housing requirement and Aireborough is identified for just three per cent of the total needed. All sites within the plan are subject to the same thorough mitigation measures, including for flood alleviation.”