Bramham Estate unveiled its latest proposals for a housing development on greenbelt land in Bardsey at a public consultation held at Bardsey Village Hall on Wednesday October 19th 2-7pm.  

Nick Lane Fox, of the Bramham Estate wishes to develop a large Estate owned agricultural site adjacent to the A58 for residential housing. He states that it would be a joint venture between the Estate and Sandby ltd.  

As part of his long term strategy for the conservation of the Estate, Mr Lane Fox proposes that the Bardsey site should be released from the protection afforded by its green belt status. He wants the planning status of the land to be changed from agricultural to residential, and with the resulting capital gain apply the proceeds of the building of 150 houses to fund the estate’s plans.


The Estate, which has extensive land interests in the Bardsey area, has had had a long term desire to get planning permission for a change of use of the site.  It unsuccessfully promoted the site’s exclusion from the green belt in the early 1990’s, when the UDP (Unitary Development Plan – Leeds City Council’s consultation for strategic land development over the whole of the city) was being formulated. Leeds CC has maintained a policy of developing ‘brownfield land first’ to meet its housing needs.  

The proposal re-emerged in the last few years when the ‘successor plan’ to the UDP, the LDF (Local Development Framework), was being put together, and Leeds CC was obliged to ask for sites to be nominated for consideration for housing. The Estate site was given the reference 1106 in the Leeds CC ‘Strategic Housing Land  Availability Assessment’ analysis known as SHLAA. Consultations took place between the Estate and Leeds CC , but the Estate’s proposals were not included in the final draft of the sites that Leeds wanted to adopt as part of its strategy, the site was graded red under the traffic light assessment of all sites. 

The steering group established by Bardsey Parish Council to review overall development strategy and SHLAA sites, met with Mr Lane Fox in 2013.

As a result of its consultations the Estate has changed its proposals for how the site would be developed. In common with many other landowners and major housebuilding companies, it claims that the Leeds CC policy is flawed, and that development of the Bardsey site would help address the housing need for the area. The Bardsey draft neighbourhood plan identifies that a mix of 55 starter or ‘downsizing’ homes is needed to meet local requirements. Leeds City Council policy is still to focus residential developments on ‘brownfield’ land or smaller ‘windfall’ sites that are not in the greenbelt. 

The current proposal is likely to claim that all the concerns expressed in previous public consultations are not relevant or could be mitigated. Those concerns relate mainly to flooding risk, the impact on the A58 and the infill of an open space, thereby contributing to the type of ribbon development which some communities along the A58 feel would be detrimental to the character of the area.  

The Bardsey Parish Council website has a section – Neighbourhood Plan – which has explanations of and links to all the processes that have been referred to above. In particular the following is of interest: