Chief executive hits back in reserve row

Calderdale Council Chief Executive Merran McRae.

Calderdale Council Chief Executive Merran McRae.

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The chief executive of Calderdale Council has hit back over how the consultation process of the future of Cromwell Bottom nature reserve is being conducted.

Environmental groups said they were being kept in the dark about proposals for the 100-acre site.

However, Merran McRae has spoken out on Twitter saying this was not the case and that Calderdale Council has a passion to do what’s best for the reserve.

She said: “The master plan report was in public and consultation now ongoing, all welcome and no-one needs to be in dark!”

She added that the drop-in sessions at Cromwell Bottom have been held over the summer of 2015 where people can give their views on the future of the site from 10am to 4pm.

The next sessions are on Sunday August 16 and Saturday September 12 2015.

A stall will also be at the Brighouse Canal and Music festival on August 22 and 23.

A model of Cromwell Bottom has been used at the Council’s drop in sessions and stalls.

Groups have also seen draft plans but when the Council was asked by the Brighouse Echo if they could be made available, they declined to send the drawings.

Calderdale Council and other bodies are proposing a master plan for the piece of land in the Calder Valley between Elland and Brighouse.

The area is made up of the former landfill site at North Bank Loop and Cromwell Bottom Nature Reserve.

Cycle and walking trails are being proposed along with recreational facilities including geocaching, camping, canoeing; installation of a hydro-generating plant; employment space; training facilities; restoration of Tag Lock and Tag Cut and more.

The Council say once the consultation is completed the results will be summarised on their website.

A plan for Cromwell Bottom will then be drawn up, and residents will have the chance to comment on this before the final plan is agreed.