New housing plans for Scholes site

Rakehill Road, Scholes.
Rakehill Road, Scholes.

Housebuilder Barratt Developments has said it is working on a revised housing scheme for their Scholes site.

The announcement comes days after the dismissal of a planning appeal for 300 units which was refused on grounds relating to a substandard junction at Station Road and Rakehill Road.

But Barratt said it will now revise its plans to provide a more comprehensive highway solution to help support local traffic flow.

Ian Ruthven, Managing Director at Barratt Developments, said: “Given the major shortage of housing sites in this area of Leeds, we have decided to amend our scheme to provide a smaller number of houses with a single access off Main Street.

“The reduced numbers and a single access route deals with the problem identified by the inspector and allows us to deliver much needed housing in the short term.

“In the medium term we will continue to work with the City Council to promote the rest of the site for residential development, which will include a solution to the outlined highways concern.”

Chris Gilman, Managing Director at GMI Property, said: “Whilst we were disappointed with the overall conclusion, we are hugely encouraged with the majority of the Inspector’s decision and his views on the suitability of the site for development.

“Given that current housing needs are not being met in the area, now is the time to make use of the land to help boost the supply of housing locally.

“Our plans incorporate major benefits for the community including expansion land for the existing primary school, a new doctor’s surgery and a major new public park.”

The government decision to refuse the appeal was welcomed by campaigners who had fought to stop the plans.

Scholes resident and volunteer planning expert, George Hall at the time said the whole village was delighted that the inspector found in their favour.

He added: “Not least the working group of Scholes Community Forum SOS who worked tirelessly publicising, arranging a public meeting and securing the mandate from 747 residents for me to represent them at the appeal.

“Scholes is a small rural village with a sense of place. The infrastructure, highways (safety) education and health facilities, let alone the hourly bus service to the district centres and Leeds is less than adequate. These were the important issues which were raised at the appeal.”