Congratulations Bardsey and East Keswick – you’ve saved our Green Belt!

On 26th April the Leeds Planning Panel made a unanimous decision to reject the Bramham Estate’s application to build 140 houses on the red flagged Green Belt land alongside the A58 in Bardsey. As 6 months have now passed, the timeline to lodge an appeal has elapsed, so the Bramham Estate plans as submitted are dead!
 Congratulations Bardsey and East Keswick– you’ve saved our Green Belt!!!
We’ve not only saved the precious open space that all of us cherish, but we’ve also avoided the distinct likelihood of suffering from significant flooding, and the horrendous impact on our roads and local infrastructure this proposed scheme would have caused.
Ours is a superb case study that may well be the defense shield against other attempts to exploit the potential loophole for raising money at the expense of a community to fund the upkeep of a rich landowner’s property.
We deserve to be very proud of our villages and our neighbours in Collingham for having such authentic and enthusiastic commitment to the campaign throughout the past 20 months.
Attending the meetings, contributing to the funds for the Consultants (Ethical Partnership – who did an excellent job for us) and – very importantly – coming out in force at the crucial Planning Panel meeting at Leeds City Hall on 26th  April to demonstrate the unified commitment we all, as a community, have towards protecting our Green Belt, our homes and our environment – was truly wonderful and so effective.
Our gratitude goes to the Parish Council who produced such an effective Neighbourhood Plan and arranged a very successful and powerful referendum, which were vital to our success. The Parish Council were acting in concert with the Bardsey Action Group (BAG) who worked tirelessly in the campaign to fend off this dreadful threat to the village.
Many thanks indeed to Kevin, Jack, Corina, Ian, Michael, the 2 x Phils, Sophie, Jason, Julia (who produced the videos) – and especially our inspirational leader, Tim. These were the main members of the BAG team, who tenaciously worked very hard with a huge amount of determination to produce this wonderful, successful result.
But most of all many thanks to all of you, dear neighbours, and your families and your friends who sent in letters of objections and supported the campaign from the start – you made this happen – showing that democracy and community spirit is alive, well and definitely kicking!
Be proud – you did a great deed here for our villages, the future and, for providing an inspiration to many other communities needing to protect Green Belt areas throughout our green and pleasant land.
We can congratulate ourselves on what has been achieved, However, it is crucial that we all remain vigilant as there are likely to be other threats – including potentially from Bramham Estate – should they choose a different approach to developing the land, or should planning laws change.
We all need to be looking at the horizon, so the BAG team plans to stay in formation and will be pro-active in keeping in contact with Leeds City Council’s Planning Dept and the Councillors to help ensure that the community’s needs remain paramount.
We will build on the excellent rapport and effective partnership with the Parish Councillors. Although we now have a lot of valuable skills and experience, it’s vitally important that these are passed on so we would welcome and encourage more residents to join our group to safeguard the village for the future. It’s also a great fun team that has shown how effective the community can be when it works together.
Please help us all to keep the village protected by emailing us at info@BardseyActionGroup.co.uk
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