Call to scrap homes plan

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MORE than 1,400 people have signed a petition that calls on Kirklees Council to scrap its plan to build houses on green belt land in Thornhill Lees.

Members of Thornhill Lees Community Action Group handed the petition to Coun Khizar Iqbal, for him to present to a meeting of Kirklees Council on Wednesday.

Coun Iqbal, (Con, Dews South) said: “I think this petition is a very loud and clear message to Kirklees Council that the overwhelming majority of people in Thornhill Lees and Dewsbury South are against the development on green belt land.

“We are not opposed to the principle of housing development, but we believe that there are sufficient brownfield sites that should be used.

“This is the only green belt land left in Dewsbury South, with the exception of two rural villages.

“What the council is proposing is the destruction of the green belt and the environment that is left here.”

Under Kirklees Council’s Local Development Framework plan, 2,300 houses would be built on green belt land in Dewsbury South by 2028.

It is thought these homes could be built on council-owned land behind Ravensthorpe Road and Lees Hall Road.

However, Coun Iqbal fears that allowing development on green belt land under the LDF would set a precedent for more development on the green belt in the future.

He said there could be room for as many as 5,000 houses if all of the green belt land in Thornhill Lees was developed.

Coun Iqbal said: “I have concluded that with that number of houses in a small settlement, we are talking about an additional 15,000 to 20,000 people.

“It’s totally unacceptable.”