Plans to build an all-weather pitch surrounded by 15-metre-high floodlights close to housing in Leeds have been withdrawn after residents voiced their fears.
Cockburn High School, based in Gipsy Lane, Beeston, submitted proposals to revamp their playing fields, which would create a full size artificial grass pitch to the rear of houses on the neighbouring Southleigh Estate in July.
Residents were worried about disruptive late night light from eight proposed floodlights and noise on the pitch that could be used up to 10pm, seven days a week.
But after a number of letters of complaint were sent to Leeds City Council and a petition against the plans gathered pace, the school has agreed to move the proposed pitch more than 70 metres from housing.
Cockburn headteacher David Gurney said: “If you think about the legacy of the Olympics, what we want are world class facilities at Cockburn.
“We have listened to the residents’ objections and I feel that we have done a lot to appease their concerns.”
He said that in practice the facilities, for which new plans are currently being finalised by architects, are unlikely to be used up until 10pm at night but will need to be used be the community to justify funding.
The move was announced at a Southleigh Residents Association meeting last week.
John Ellis, chair of Southleigh Residents Association, said: “In many respects the meeting itself, which the residents association organised, was a bit of a triumph of people power as they have got the school to totally move the pitch away from their homes.”
At the meeting concerns were voiced that the new pitch could result in more local traffic, backing arguments for a 20mph zone in the area, but Mr Ellis said “there is nothing to suggest we should priorities that on Gipsy Lane”.
Southleigh Drive resident, John Hook, said his requests for a lower speed limit had been turned down on the grounds that not enough accidents had been reported in the area.
The all-weather pitch would feature new fencing and changing facilities on the school’s current playing fields.
A council spokeswoman said the new application will be sent to a plans panel for discussion.