Victory for back garden gang

Residents and councillors upset at site planned for sub-station at new Meadowcroft development by Persimmon Homes at St Giles Road, Hipperholme.'Pictured are Andrew Robinson, coun Graham Hall, George Robinson, coun Colin Raistrick and coun David Kirton.
Residents and councillors upset at site planned for sub-station at new Meadowcroft development by Persimmon Homes at St Giles Road, Hipperholme.'Pictured are Andrew Robinson, coun Graham Hall, George Robinson, coun Colin Raistrick and coun David Kirton.

Campaigners were over the moon after councillors refused plans to construct a substation which would tower over their back gardens by 21 feet.

Housing developer Persimmon Homes wanted to build a substation which would look like a garage on their land in Spout House Lane where they are building 147 houses.

But on Tuesday night councillors on Calderdale Council’s planning committee refused the plans.

Andrew Robinson said he felt the correct decision had been made. “The proposed substation would have been extremely overbearing on the existing residential properties which have been there for more than 140 years. It is clear that the substation could be situated 
anywhere within the development. It would have been completely out of character with the area. It is good that common sense has prevailed.”

Forty jobs will also be created and a number of existing ones safeguarded after plans to renovate land next to Vine Industrial Estate were given the green light by the committee.

There will be an industrial building and refurbishment of an existing steel framed structure in order to create an enclosed area behind the Red Rooster pub. The unit will be occupied by Brighouse Patent Walling Systems. The jobs to be created will be a mix of office staff, skilled and non skilled labour in the factory area.

Objectors felt that the proposed development was in the wrong location and that there was already two empty warehouses “so what is the point building another one just as big when two more suitable 50 metres”.

But councillors spoke in favour of the application saying it was ideal employment land something which they lacked in Calderdale.

In relation to the Hove Edge site councillors were shocked that Persimmon Homes wanted to build the substation only yards from the back gardens of the existing houses.

They heard that the company wanted to install the substation which would look like a domestic garage with a ridge at 14feet. There was also a different of 7 feet between the level of the development and the existing homes in St Giles Road.

But to prevent the neighbours from seeing the building they were planning on planting trees which would be even higher.

Councillor David Hardy said if the substation was installed elsewhere on the development then to their homeowners it would look like another garage. He didn’t object to the design: “But where it is situated it is 14feet then a seven feet drop into these residents gardens,” he said.

“Is there no reason why you can’t relocate it anywhere else. Have you explored other sites,” he asked the agent for Persimmon.

They replied: “We did explore other sites but we felt this was the best one.”

The location of the substation was not in the originally plan.

Councillor Martin Peel moved to refuse the application. “I feel it spoils amenity value of the residents in close proximity which are at a significant lower level,” he said. “The materials and design of it would fit perfectly anywhere else on there but it would stick out like a sore thumb with the Georgian stone building.”