‘La La Land’ plan for traveller’s site in Leeds refused

Hollinhurt traveller plan refused. Pic: Google.
Hollinhurt traveller plan refused. Pic: Google.

Councillors have refused an application to set up a traveller’s pitch which fetched more than 200 objections – despite planning officers recommending it for approval.

Members of Leeds City Council’s North and East Plans Panel rejected the proposal for a three-generation family to live at a site bordering Green Belt land off Hollinhurst in Allerton Bywater.

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Previous plans to build a home at the site had also been denied because they were deemed not in-keeping with the area’s character.

Coun Mark Dobson (Ind, Garforth and Swillington), who was not on the panel, told the meeting: “In all honesty if any of you are saying what’s being proposed today is an improvement on a single dwelling – what’s the film called? – you’re in La La Land.”

Dr Simon Ruston, the applicant’s agent, told the meeting that the plan represented a “golden opportunity” to meet the council’s requirement to provide plots for traveller families “with no cost to anyone” but the family.

But the panel at Leeds Civic Hall rejected the application to allocate the land for a mobile home, two touring caravans and a “day room”.

Its reasons included the plan potentially creating an “over-development” of a small site, it impacting on the area’s character and there being a lack of manoeuvring space for vehicles.

Hollinhurst resident Angela Hobson said: “We’re really relieved they’ve seen sense but there will be an appeal.”

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