Residents’ fears over losing their open space

The former Badger Hill Cricket Club, Rastrick, where 750 houses could be built
The former Badger Hill Cricket Club, Rastrick, where 750 houses could be built

RESIDENTS have spoken out over proposals of a new housing development on the ground of a former cricket club in Rastrick.

The project could see 780 houses built on the former leased ground of Badger Hill Cricket Club on Dewsbury Road, behind the Sun Inn pub.

Nearby residents said there were fundamental issues with building on the site.

Nick Midgley, whose property looks over the site said there are many reasons why development should not be supported and the arguments and evidence are extensive.

The architect said in his comments when sites were being proposed under the Local Plan that the current use of the area is protected farmland, green belt, wildlife corridor and recreation open space.

“Based on local knowledge, local historical fact and land use, green belt designation for the wider proportion of land to the west has been in place for decades and the areas that were formerly quarried have been reclaimed as farmland reinstating the open space.

“Change of use of this land has not been consulted in the wider planning arena.”

He also raised issues with the safety of the crossroads at the Sun Inn and the fear that the houses would be used more by people who would work in Leeds, Manchester and Huddersfield due to easy access to the the M62.

John Sheppard, who also lives near the former cricket field and open land said: “I am sad that the cricket club has folded. I am also concerned about the possibility of this open space being lost to the community.”

The owners of the field, and nearby land, are Cambridgeshire-based company Thornhill Estates who have appointed York-based company, Saville Estates to look after the project.

Cricket has been played on the ground for 125 years.

Retiring Badger Hill player-secretary Paul Carter, said the club has ceased to function there as there are too many issues to consider when asking as in the past for an extended lease.

The club had three years left on the current agreement, but due to the lack of investment funds to improve facilities and updating equipment and changing rooms, they decided to withdraw from the game.