A man who wants to build a daycare and training centre for 150 dogs in Meanwood has released further information about his plans.
Edward Flatley has run a dog walking business in north Leeds for the past five years and now hopes to open a permanent facility on a former cricket pitch that has been disused since 2004.
Plans revealed for former Highbury Cricket Club site in Meanwood
Hollywoof will have space for around 150 pets, and will consist of several different activity zones supervised by trained handlers.
Mr Flatley has responded to concerns from Meanwood residents over noise, traffic and environmental issues surrounding the use of the site.
Memories of Highbury Cricket Club
His plans include using composting technology to dispose of the dogs' waste and offering a door-to-door van collection service to reduce traffic movements.
Dogs will also have to pass a strict behaviour test to get a place at Hollywoof - which he hopes will mitigate disruptive barking.
Sixty objections to the proposals have already been submitted to Leeds City Council planners ahead of a decision on the Hollywoof application, and the Save Highbury Works campaign group attracted around 200 residents to a public meeting last week. The group's members want to retain the ground's use for sports and recreation.
Mr Flatley settled on the site - which was once the home of the Highbury Works cricket team - because of its access to a main road and location in an area which he believes will be receptive to his ideas.
"One day I walked past the old, abandoned Highbury Cricket Club. Having gone to school locally and had classmates who played there, I knew the site well and it was sad to see it in such a state of disrepair.
"The site has everything. It’s in an up-and-coming area with a fantastic community of forward thinkers who, I believe, will support a professional business that’s looking to change the face of dog daycare in the UK. It’s also in an area that cares deeply about sustainability and the environment."
He hopes to provide flexible, full- and part-time employment for around 40 staff, who will be able to work towards NVQ qualifications in dog care.
- Only five customers per hour would be allowed to collect their dogs from the Mill Pond Lane entrance
- 92 per cent of dogs would be collected by van from their homes over a staggered three-hour period using the Hollin Lane entrance
- Staff arrival will also be staggered
- Overall no more than 10 vehicles per hour will arrive at or leave the site
- Noise management is based on avoiding situations where dogs become bored, anxious or overexcited
- All dogs (which must be adults) have to pass a behavioural assessment designed by the Kennel Club. Dogs which are prone to excessive barking would not be admitted. Poorly behaved dogs can be asked to leave or can be walked off-site by staff instead. Dog trainers can also work with pets with behavioural issues
- The training zones are shielded from neighbouring houses, and the newly-arrived dogs will be exercised to reduce excitement levels
- Each training zone has a theme - such as a foraging zone and a sandpit. Dogs will be in groups of 12
- There will be no kennel-style pens at the site
- Dogs will not be fed on the site
- Dogs will not be exercised in areas close to the site boundary
- Electronic monitoring of noise levels will take place
- A tumbling composter will be used to dispose of dog faeces. Tumblers produce high-quality compost without releasing an odour. This may be eventually upgraded to a compost oven when capacity increases
- Dogs will not be able to urinate in local water courses