Agenda item

22/08014/FU - land West of Kent Road, Pudsey

To receive and consider the attached report of the Chief Planning Officer regarding an application for construction of a Sixth Form College on land West of Kent Road with new vehicular and pedestrian access and parking, Pudsey.



The report of the Chief Planning Officer presented an application for construction of a Sixth Form College on land West of Kent Road with new vehicular access and pedestrian access and parking, Pudsey.


Members visited the site prior to the meeting and site plans and photographs were displayed and referred to throughout the discussion of the application.


Members were updated on the following points:

·  A statement received on behalf of the applicant set out the position for a need in the local area requiring significant growth for young people. The facility provides services for 16-18 year old learners and 600 places will be made available to meet the demand in the Pudsey area.

·  The applicant believes there is capacity within the existing bus services in the local area. However, has confirmed they will contribute 25,000 per annum towards changes in bus provision, and this will be reviewed after 5 years.

·  Further comments received from the Council’s landscape architect relayed further refinements in relation to landscaping and social areas around the site.

·  Paragraph 81 of the submitted report should refer to policy G6-3.

·  There has been a statutory objection from Sporting England. The applicant will provide nearby playing pitch improvements.


Referring to the PowerPoint, Members were informed of the following:

·  The location of the site is situated west of Kent Road and to the south of the site is Chaucer Avenue, where residential properties back on to the site. To the north and west of the site is Crawshaw Academy and its various sports pitches.

·  Main access to the site is on Kent Road, for vehicular access and pedestrian access for pupils. Staff will use the Robin Lane access point to the site. Visitors will not use the access point on Robin Lane.

·  The existing pedestrian access point is adjacent to the all-weather pitch.

·  Pictures referred to views of the site facing west and north, demonstrating the various levels of the pitch and quality of the pitch. The pitch is unusable and suffers with drainage issues.

·   The layout will consist of a rectangular block which will sit centrally on the site and is approximately 92 metres in length and 20 metres wide. There are 20 car parking spaces proposed to the front of the building, with a turning point for vehicles, as well as 10 drop off bays. Additionally, there will be 25 car parking spaces dedicated to staff.

·  There will be a dedicated footpath link, that will require a fob key to access, preventing pupils entering Crawshaw Academy and vice versa.

·  To the south of the site there is a proposal for a mature bund, including a significant variety of shrubs and trees. The purpose of the bund is to provide a screen from residents on Chaucer Avenue. There will be a need to provide sufficient screening in the future.

·  Design elements of the proposed building, includes a central glazed section on the northern elevation, regular fenestration and coping to define the roof line, canopy to provide shading and metal cladding system with the logo in the corner. The design is considered ‘calm’ and responds to the local context and architectural requirements.

·  Floor plans detailing the location of the classrooms, central corridors main hall, sports hall, lifts, and lobby area.

·  The roof is proposed to be a flat roof solution, projecting a canopy to the front. Solar panels will also be introduced.

·  The location of local bus provision and train stations were discussed.

·  The site provides local provision and will benefit the area. It is believed to encourage the use of sustainable travel, including cycling and the use of public transport. The college will support students where possible, in providing free bus passes and the applicant has agreed to propose a financial contribution subject to the local transport provision being affected.

·  Where the access point is proposed on Kent Road to the east of the site, traffic calming measures will be introduced off-site.


Councillor D Seary attended the meeting as an objector to the application, and commented on the following:

·  The local infrastructure is not adequate for the number of additional people the application will attract. Bramley train station is not nearby, and 2 nearby bus services have recently been cancelled.

·  Pudsey bus station is not a 10 minute walk, and the bus station has recently been attracting anti-social behaviour related issues. The number of additional people the application will attract, may add to existing issues.

·  Complaints are currently received from residents nearby regarding parking facilities for students and students being dropped off creating local issues.

·  Footpaths through sheltered housing complexes and ginnels will be the routes children will be taking to travel to the proposed college.

·  The 25k contribution towards local sports provision, is not adequate as well as the contribution towards public transport.

·  Whilst it was acknowledged that the college would provide additional educational offers for children, the issues associated with transport provision and the impact on local residents outweigh the positives of the application.


Responding to questions from Panel Members, Councillor D Seary confirmed:

·  The current public transport system cannot take on the additional numbers coming in from outside of the area. It was believed that young children tend to get dropped off by their parents, and do not tend to walk.

·  The sports pitch isn’t currently used and although it is a greenspace allocation, the sports pitch hasn’t been used for a number of years.

·  There are no objections to the additional provision of education, but the site is not suitable and would be better placed elsewhere. It is foreseen that there will be increased complaints regarding anti-social behaviour and issues with access to the site and vehicles.


Representatives of the application attended the meeting and informed the Panel of the following points:

·  This is a partnership application between the 3 schools in Pudsey and Leeds City Council College and it is proposed given the expected demographic growth in Leeds, and the partner schools closing their provision to allow for additional secondary school provision.

·  The proposals ensure that the local area and surrounding areas will benefit and improve on current educational needs.

·  The applicant looked at alternative sites, but there were no alternative locations.

·  Proposals to improve on existing outdoor provision will be provided via a financial contribution. Sporting England did not want to discuss the proposals and want a replacement sports pitch.

·  The applicant feels the benefit of the College outweigh the harm to the pitch.

·  It does not clash with Crawshaw Academy times, and therefore no need for a designated bus service. The College are committed in monitoring the bus services and put forward 25k subject to the local bus provision being impacted.

·  It is considered that very few students will drive to the site, and the college will provide free bus passes to students.


In response to questions from Panel Members, the following was confirmed:

·  45 staff will be employed, including part-time staff. There will be some elements of car sharing and sustainable travel incorporated in the Travel Plan.

·  There will be external seating for students to relax. Due to the constraints of the site, it was not possible to provide sporting recreational spaces. There will be discussions with Crawshaw Academy regarding use of their MUGA spaces.

·  Air source heat pumps will also be introduced as well as solar panels. The applicant hasn’t considered rainwater harvesting, but this is something that can be considered.

·  The 25k proposed towards sporting provision allows the Council to provide associated improvements to the quality of pitches and is based on local examples such as Queens Park.


Further to questions from officers, the following was confirmed:

·  The point regarding the pedestrian footpath raised by Councillor T Smith relates to the Pre-Application proposal for the internal pedestrian link through the Crawshaw Academy site. This was explored and could not be taken forward due to safeguarding implications.

·  The staff car park will be lit, and the access routes will be secure and safe for all users.

·  The liaison architectural officer was consulted as part of the application process and has not submitted any concerns.

·  Accessibility standards are not met in this application. It is a 5 minute walk to the transport hub and 10 minute walk to Pudsey bus station.

·  Further to a comment regarding the 25k proposed for improving playing pitches in the local area not being adequate, it was noted that whilst this was not a requirement from the applicant, officers explained the judgement is based on the balance of need for the proposed development and colleagues in Children’s Services also support the overall need for the site.

·  It was confirmed there is a surplus of 6.1 hectares of outdoor sports provision in the local area.

·  The playing pitch is within a contained space in the Crawshaw Academy site and has not been used for approximately 15 years.

·  There have been 5 accidents near the site over 5 years ago, and there has been none recently.


Comments from Panel Members relayed the following:

·  There are concerns regarding car parking and the provision for taxi spaces.

·  Concerns highlighted accessibility issues, and reassurances would be provided if a dedicated bus service is proposed, to ensure students can travel there with no issues.

·  Adequate information has not been provided regarding drainage issues.

·  Whilst is has been a few years since accidents have occurred in the local area, the addition of a high number of students, increases the chances of an accident occurring.

·  It was acknowledged that there is a need for significant sixth form provision in the area, however, the objection received from Sports England should be taken into consideration regarding the loss of future sports provision. However, some members commented that the space has not been used for a number of years and the loss of greenspace suffices the need for educational purposes.

·  The 10 drop off spaces is favourable, including the turning point for vehicles.

·  A suggestion that rainwater harvesting is incorporated into the application.

·  The provision for secondary school places can be increased as a result of the application.


A motion was put forward to move the officer recommendation. This was voted on, moved, and seconded and it was therefore

 RESOLVED: To approve the application in principle subject to referral to the Secretary of State & S106 agreement relating to the upgrading of off-site sports pitches in the catchment area, travel plan monitoring fee, off-site highway works to provide traffic calming measures, footpath widening works and TRO’s & £40k contributions; and the relevant planning conditions as set out in the submitted report.


(The meeting concluded at 15:55)


Supporting documents: