Housing plans which will shape the district for the next 15 years have been halted – after an MP urged Government to step in and demand Bradford Council’s plan be stopped.
The Core Strategy of Bradford’s Council Local plans was ratified by a planning inspector last month but Shipley MP Philip Davies has repeatedly said the council were failing to meet its obligations to build on brownfield site and preserve the Green Belt.
Bradford Council has been ordered “ not to take any step in connection with the adoption of the Plan” while Government considers issues raised by Mr Davies in letters, which focus around greenbelt, brownfield land, appropriate locations for developments to alleviate need and regeneration.
Mr Davies said: “I believe the work of the Council and that of the Inspector to be fundamentally flawed, particularly in relation to the Green Belt. The Plan includes building houses on a large amount of land designated as Green Belt land – most notably in the Wharfedale ward of my constituency. The Government clearly states that Green Belt land should only be used in exceptional circumstances and surely the building of so many houses on Green Belt land in a village should need particularly exceptional circumstances which I do not believe have been met.
“There will still be large numbers of empty properties across the district not being used, swathes of brownfield land which clearly should be developed before any residential development on the Green Belt and building in Wharfedale does not alleviate the housing problems and the growing population in the city centre.”
Only the Secretary of State for the Department for Communities and Local Government can give the council the green light to proceed.
Communities Minister Gavin Barwell said: “I have taken the decision to issue a holding direction to the City of Metropolitan District Council which will prevent the Council taking any further step in connection with adoption of the Bradford Core Strategy Development Plan and will allow the Secretary of State further time to consider the matter before deciding whether to intervene.”