Shock over plans for industrial site

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FAMILIES in Chidswell have criticised the council for failing to publicise plans for a 35 hectare industrial development on neighbouring greenbelt land.

Kirklees Council has earmarked land near Chidswell and Shaw Cross for business use in its Local Development Framework (LDF).

The LDF sets out sites for new business and housing until 2028.

A formal consultation ended on Monday but many in Chidswell said they knew nothing about it until local councillors called a meeting on Saturday.

Mollie Heybeck, 74, of Hey Beck Lane, Woodkirk, said a 1997 campaign to stop a 700 acre opencast on some of the same land showed that kind of development was unwanted.

“It isn’t right, not on greenbelt land. The impact it’s going to have on traffic, noise, the environment. I just find it so awful to think about.”

Keith Williams, 61, who lives off Chidswell Lane, said: “A lot of people fought against the opencast but I heard nothing about this until a flyer for the meeting came through.

“I don’t think councillors should vote an issue when people haven’t had a proper say on the plans.”

Coun Paul Kane, who helped organise the meeting, said he had passed feedback from the 90 people at the meeting and would call another before the vote expected in June.

Concerns included loss of wildlife, congestion and lack of community benefit.

The council said its consultation was ‘comprehensive’ with official leaflets delivered to 92 per cent of homes.