Agenda item

21/09266/RM - Former Airedale Mills, Moss Bridge Works, Town Street, Rodley, Leeds, LS13 1HP

To consider the attached report of the Chief Planning Officer regarding a Reserved Matters Application for layout, scale, appearance and landscaping for the erection of 67 dwellings pursuant to outline approval 18/01501/OT, Former Airedale Mills, Moss Bridge Works, Town Street, Rodley, Leeds, LS13 1HP.



The report of the Chief Planning Officer presented a Reserved Matters application for layout, scale, appearance, and landscaping for the erection of 67 dwellings pursuant to outline approval 18/01501/OT, Former Airedale Mills, Moss Bridge Works, Town Street, Rodley, Leeds, LS13 1HP. The application was presented before Members on 16th February 2023.


Issues presented at the previous Panel meeting included pavement parking, improved accessibility to greenspace, design, and environmental considerations.


The Legal Adviser to the Panel set out the procedure to be followed and outlined some preliminary matters.


Photographs and slides were shown throughout the officer presentation, and Panel members were provided with the following information:

·  Airedale Mills formerly occupied the site, and it is positioned in a triangular form between the Leeds-Liverpool Canal to the south/south-west and the River Aire to the east/south-east. The northern boundary is the access road to the Rodley Nature Reserve which lies to the east.

·  The surrounding area is mixed, with Mill Bridge Works on the opposite side of the Leeds Liverpool Canal and to the south-east of the site lies Airedale Wharf, a residential cul-de-sac. The access over the bridge also serves Rodley Cricket Club and Rodley Nature Reserve.

·  Pictures presented showed the change in levels where the adopted road will be as well as existing mature trees. The development seeks to retain trees, as well as the installation of a new 3m ecology buffer. The ecology buffer will provide an 8m separation buffer from the development to River Aire. Additional mitigation measures are proposed including a cat mesh fencing to the gardens of the dwellings.

·  The proposed development consists of mixed units (2, 3 and 4 bed dwellings), including attached, semi-detached and an apartment block (1 and 2 bed units). 51 dwellings in total, and a 16 unit apartment block. Minor design elements have been proposed to the units to incorporate stone heads and cills to provide consistency to the surrounding area, as well as general landscaping arrangements and tree planting in the street scene and to the front of a number of properties.

·  The site layout has been amended, at the request of members, to reorientate plots 7-16 in order to provide frontages facing the River Aire along with changes to plot 33 to create a dual aspect, again facing the River Aire. Options to change the proposed townhouse properties were explored but were not amended due to the change in levels. Officers consider the current layout of these properties an appropriate design. Additionally, changes to these properties would leave insufficient space in the rear gardens.

·  Central dwellings and the bungalow comply with accessibility standards.

·  The greenspace to the rear of the apartment block will be made available for all residents in the proposed development. A 50,000 contribution is also proposed for on and off-site greenspace contribution.

·  10 affordable units have been proposed.


Members were informed that further representations have been received from a local ward councillor and Rodley Nature Reserve. Comments referred to the ecology buffer creating a space for habitats not to be removed and comprehensive plans to be provided to outline how the area will be protected. The position of the drainage pipe isn’t yet fixed on the plan, and Rodley Nature Reserve have been asked to be involved in the final positioning of the pipe. Further representations have also been received from Councillors Amanda and Andrew Carter, regarding safety and operational issues with the swing-bridge.


Further to questions from Panel Members, the following information was relayed:

·  Proposals include the provision of air source heat pumps and water butts. The applicant did not explore solar panels as part of this application. A legal definition in terms of how the 10% energy generation to be met on site was provided; whereby energy can be generated through various measures and no further development can take place until the condition regarding EN1 being satisfied is met. The applicant has suggested that the condition can be met through air source heat pumps, if not, the condition cannot be discharged, but if breached appropriate enforcement action could be taken and a variation application will have to be submitted.

·  Members of Panel raised concerns that the proposed parking to the bungalow is not adequate in terms of accessibility, and it was requested that two ‘side by side’ spaces be provided to the bungalow to provide maximum space in terms of access. Officers confirmed this can be incorporated and shown on a revised plan.

·  There is no specific lighting scheme, and any lighting arrangements will be in consultation with the nature officer. The impact upon bats and ecology is mitigated through appropriate lighting.

·  The Nature Reserve and Cricket Club have their own parking, and issues regarding parking as a result of the development, is not likely. There is space on the development for visitor parking and the site is policy complaint in regard to this.


Comments from Panel Members raised the following key issues:

·  Assurances to be sought regarding enforceability of conditions relating to heat and energy generation. A request was made that figures are sought in terms of EN1 and EN2, for future applications.

·  The layout of the site from the previous application has not been improved as a whole and it is felt that there is a missed opportunity in terms of the layout in relation to the surrounding canal and river.

·  The proposed housing units do not meet the Neighbourhoods for Living Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) and it was felt that the housing units lack security and does not provide an adequate amount of greenspace for future residents.

·  Concerns regarding the single access point to the ecology buffer and a comment that maintenance is not required, and the buffer should not be tampered with. It was confirmed that the gate will remain locked and is simply a point of access in emergencies. Additionally, there were concerns regarding the implementation of the fence prior to the first occupation, and potential damagecaused to the ecology buffer from machinery. Further to this, officers confirmed that the applicant is agreeable to a condition that identifies exclusion zones that will be fenced off.

·  The final decision of where the rainwater drain is situated should be confirmed in consultation with Rodley Nature Reserve. Officers confirmed that Rodley Nature Reserve will be involved in the process, and they can be consulted. However, the ultimate decision lies within the responsibility of the local authority.

·  Whilst it was acknowledged that access is not considered as part of the application, this remained a concern and posed possible security implications subject to the swing-bridge not operating as it should.


A motion was put forward to move an amendment to the officer recommendation. To approve the application subject to an additional condition regarding a scheme for signage to make clear that greenspace to the rear of the flat block was open to all residents to be submitted and approved by the LPA and to extend the delegation to include the submission of a revised layout relating to the bungalow to secure ‘side by side’ parking for disabled residents. This motion was moved and seconded, and therefore it was:

RESOLVED – To defer and delegate approval to the Chief Planning Officer subject to the addition of a condition relating to signage to the greenspace and revised bungalow/parking layout.


Supporting documents: