Sun Lane development update

Why is Burley in Wharfedale still threatened with 500 houses on Sun Lane?

Each week I continue receive letters about unwanted large housing developments in Burley in Wharfedale and Menston.

This letter is intended to explain why we are still threatened with the Sun Lane Development and further applications to build in the village and elsewhere.

The current situation.

As you probably know the Secretary of State for Housing turned down the planning application by CEG for 500 houses on Sun Lane. CEG and Bradford Council appealed to the High Court and won. Planning permission was reinstated subject to a further review by the Secretary of State. His decision is pending. All concerned individuals, including myself, have made representation stating that the changes of circumstance since the Inspector passed the application should now be taken into account. The most notable change has been the Government’s new algorithm for calculating housing need. Leeds City Council have already reduced their housing numbers and a housing development on Green Belt in Guiseley has been turned down by the High Court.

Bradford’s unadopted Local Plan.

Despite this, Bradford Council is still agitating for the Secretary of State to allow the planning permission. They cite the lack of a five year planning supply of homes. This is true, but it is of Bradford’s own making because they have yet to finalise the Local Plan which was well over due in May 2019 when the Inspector ruled in favour of the developers. It can’t be right that Bradford’s own lack of progress in finalising the Local Plan is used to bolster their appeal for houses that are no longer needed. I understand the Government White Paper suggests that Bradford only requires 20,000 homes when previously Bradford Council claimed it needed 42,000.

If the houses are built at Sun Lane Bradford Council will receive a Community Infrastructure Levy of around £3 million and ongoing New Homes bonus and Council Tax payments. We will loose our valuable Green Belt and have to endure the lack of infrastructure to support 500 new homes. Furthermore speculative builders will continue to apply for planning permission all over the district until Bradford Council completes its Local Plan and acknowledges that the need for houses in Bradford has decreased.

Yours faithfully

Jackie Whiteley
District Councillor Wharfedale Ward ( Con)
Conservative Spokesperson for Planning and Highways