We returned home this evening to see the devastation caused by yet another planning proposal (see Hebweb News re Mayroyd), even prior to the planning permission being submitted! Surely this is illegal?
I am today writing to our local councillor and will be vigourously pursuing how on earth unnamed persons are simply allowed to chop down trees in an established wildlife corridor without any notification to nearby residents. The stealth approach certainly took us by surprise. Do they seriously expect to get anyone on side and not receive serious objections to proposals when they take such an underhand and ill-considered approach to the environment.
This is not the first time that Mark Clyndes has had dealings with the piece of land at Mayroyd - remember the plans (around the time when he was at Walkley Clogs) for the huge development on the land between Walkleys and Mayroyd?
Whoever is behind it, you can bet your bottom dollar that they would not be felling trees if there was not something big about to happen in the forseeable future.
So ... who owns the land?
Take your pick,I'm quite sure, that one of Mr Clyndes companies owns this stretch of land.
Mark Duncan Clyndes Director Atlantica Estates Development Ltd. Salford
Mark Duncan Clyndes Company Director Atlantica Estates Ltd. Salford
Mark Duncan Clyndes Director Atlantica Estates Southwest Ltd. Salford
Mark Duncan Clyndes Builder Castlemead Projects Ltd Salford
Mark Duncan Clyndes Manager Edenbridge Trading Ltd. Halifax
Mark Duncan Clyndes Director Greengrass Developments Ltd. Salford
Mark Duncan Clyndes Director Md Contracting Ltd. Hebden Bridge
Mark Duncan Clyndes Property Manager Md Contracting North Ltd. Salford
Mark Duncan Clyndes Property Manager Md Contracting South West Ltd. Salford
Mark Duncan Clyndes Managing Director Nowmodern Ltd. Salford
Gosh Warren, I'm impressed! But how do we prove/disprove that he owns the land?
Can anyone remember why the huge development between Walkleys and Mayroyd fell through a few years ago ... was it because it was green belt land, as has been suggested previously?
Also, to change the subject slightly - why are there all those holes on that piece of land
I have just received the following message from Calderdale following an Email I sent.
"After checking the Tree Preservation Area constrains plans, I can confirm that the trees removed were not protected by any constraints and therefore the works could be undertaken without the consent of the Local Planning Authority.
The trees which are protected in the area have not been felled.
I hope the above is of assistance, but if you have any further questions, please
do not hesitate to contact me.
I have replied to request his assurance that if the 'protected' trees are cut down the appropriate legal sanctions will follow. I suggest other people also contact Mr. Grady requesting the same assurance. Maybe, by force of numbers, something will happen.
Readers may find it interesting to see a quote I found, via Google, attributed to Mt. Clyndes and a previous tree-felling escapade, from the Yorkshire Post web-site:
“He said a planning application would be presented to the council's planning department early next week, adding that he would be surprised if any prosecutions actually resulted, as previous threats had come to nothing.
If there’s no deterrent, how can he be persuaded not to take part in such activities?
Quick service from Mr. Grady at Calderdale. I have just received the following response re the protected trees:
"Thank you for your email.
The persons who carried out the works, are aware of which trees are the subject
If work is undertaken, then the matter will be investigated, and decisions made
Looking at the Calderdale Unitary Development Plan the Mayroyd area appears to have several designations;-
1) Open space rural - regionally important
(if I am reading the key correctly, its not very clear!)
With these designations I think any planning application for buildings here would fail. However its always worth digging holes, dumping spoil, chopping down trees etc. to try and get the designations removed and planning permission approved.
Posted by Jasper
So, it appears the owner of the land has instructed contractors to clear their land. It also appears that no laws have been broken and protection orders adhered too.
Should a planning application be imminent, (which sounds probable) and if that planning application is for a Housing Association Shared ownership scheme for Hebden's young people then I will give it my full backing. I would also hope that the Town Council would also fully support such a worthwhile venture.
Posted by Dave
I am appalled at the actions of Studio Baad, Mark Clyndes, Mango Developments and others. I am afraid that they are totally driven by greed and seem to have little regard for the environment or majority views or opinions. I am afraid this is not the first time that these people have done something like this, nor, I am afraid, will it be the last unless the residents of Hebden Bridge make their feelings known to Calderdale Council
Posted by Ian
"Maybe, by force of numbers, something will happen"
What exactly do you expect to happen?
As things stand at the moment the man who owns this land is guilty of nothing apart from being the focus of unwaranted attention and criticism.
When did berating people for not breaking any laws become acceptable?
Posted by Jacob
Jasper, I am interested in your - and others - assertion that Hebden Bridge needs housing for 'its young people'. Are you suggesting that any shared ownership housing built in Hebden Bridge, would only be available for sale to people of a certain age, that had been resident in Hebden Bridge for a certain period of time?
Posted by Tom Standfield
We don't know who owns this land. But owners don't have the right to do what they like. If we allow every single landowner to build houses on their piece of land no matter where it is, the character of Hebden Bridge will soon change for the worse. This has been happening of course. We've already lost several good pubs because the rise in property prices has meant that greedy owners can make more from turning them into executive apartments than continuing to provide social and drinking centres. We've lost our adult education centre to developers and our tourist information office to a chippy.
I doubt whether there will ever be affordable housing round here as long as the "market" rules. The land at Mayroyd, right next to the cycle path, should in my view stay as a wildlife corridor. But if it is to be developed, that should be discussed and debated. Tuesday's chainsaw destruction seems like the unknown owner is giving a great big two fingers to the whole community.
Posted by Andrew Hall
To be fair, Jacob, I think Jasper's (and other's) comments probably refer to people who have lived and been brought up in the Upper Calder Valley, but who now have no chance of living here. Their age is immaterial, but the probablility is that most fall into the 'young people' category.
Posted by Julie Cockburn
The holes are because part of the area is an ex waste tip. Over the years people have dug it up looking for old bottles.
Posted by Johnny Marascalco
As Ian has made clear, the owner of the land and the developers have done nothing illegal whatsoever.
If it were legal, perhaps the committed eco-warriors of Hebden Bridge would euthanase themselves to save the planet from the pollution their living would contribute to the environment?
Like Jasper, if a scheme is proposed which offers a significant propoprtion of low-cost or shared ownership units, I am very much in favour of backing it. Previous planning submissions for affordable, shared ownership housing in Hebden have been met with the same selfish objections as any other, and this is a disappointing manifestation of the pseudo-liberal nimbyism which Hebden Bridge suffers from, rather than the genuinely liberal society it lays claim to.
Suggesting that all property developers are greedy is absurd. Property development is a business just like any other, the main difference being that it is an extremely high risk business requiring significant investment and effort in order to make any profit at all. With the profits made on development being the investement on the next.
As I have stated before on the forum, if they were doing so, would those accusing the developers of being greedy sell their homes for the most they can get and then give the profit to charity? Hebden Bridge is full of extremely wealthy people, and not all of them are property developers. Did these people all win the lottery, or did ambition (not greed) drive them to the acccumulation of their wealth?
And if there have really been several good pubs (although I can only think of the Nutclough) lost by conversion to residential accommodation, this is surely because they were not sustainable businesses. And anyway, doesn't this town have more than enough pubs?
Posted by Charlie
Regarding 'force of numbers.....'.
If you look at my comment in context, you will see that it refers to legal action being taken by Calderdale if any protected trees should be felled.
If protected trees were to be felled, don't you think the prescribed legal sanctions would be justified?
Have a look at the comment from Mr. Clyndes re legal action quoted in my message, the full article is to be found at the web address given.
Posted by Adam
Talk about jumping he gun Tom. No plans have been Submited,nor houses being built on this land at the moment. No crime has been commited or habitat been destroyed. They have cut down an estimated twenty very imature trees. The only thing I ever saw on that piece of land was a lot of litter and used needles.
I've walked on the cycle track today which if you look on any OS map actually goes through Crow Wood, not between the Railway and the river. There is no official right of way where the cycle track is at the moment.
Posted by Nina Bleasdale
Surely all the work around the present site in dispute is well documented. It was around 15-20 years ago that meetings were held and I'm sure it wasn't so many years ago I was reading the Bridge Times when planning was refused again. If I remember rightly the land there was too low to build upon with fears of flooding as well as a mains gas pipe that runs through the land which used to service the old gas works. Oh and they needed to build a new access road as well.
It can't be too hard to find out who actually owns the land. In some cases you find that no-one owns it.
Posted by Mark Clyndes
Just by way of information the land at Mayroyd is owned by a company called Revegate Limited who also own the former clog factory and all the land in between.
The site in question did have a valid consent for housing development with associated workshops until this expired very recently - as anyone looking at the planning register can see.
Posted by Lou
Many thanks to Mr Clyndes for filling us in on the information that Revegate Limited own the land at Mayroyd.
However, my question earlier in this thread was, who owns the land? Who is/are the people behind Revegate Limited?
Unfortunately, telling us that Revegate owns the land tells us nothing more than a company name.
Posted by Warren
Thanks for the information re Revegate Ltd. Strange that they have the same registered address and that the 3 Directors named Krell are also part Directors with you on some of your business companies!!!
You do mention that the planning consent has recently expired on this piece of land. Is this piece of land not part of Walkers Clog factory???? which was given planning consent on the basis that "The owners, Revegate Ltd, have agreed to hand over four of the apartments to a registered social landlord for low cost accommodation. They will also pay £35,000 towards the cost of improvements to Calder Holmes playing fields, in Hebden Bridge.
Another £35,000 will go towards the cost of educational improvements, and re-instate a wildlife corridor on the land which was destroyed last week"??
Posted by Tim
And people wonder why property is so expensive.
I wonder how many other industries are forced to "bung" the local government these sums of money in order to go about their lawful business.
Posted by Tim
Quote: I wonder how many other industries are forced to "bung" the local government these sums of money in order to go about their lawful business."
The money is needed to mitigate the demands placed on the local infrastructure by people living where no people lived before. Property doesn't exist in a vacuum with no impact on its surroundings.
Posted by Ian
Quote: The money is needed to mitigate the demands placed on the local infrastructure by people living where no people lived before. Property doesn't exist in a vacuum with no impact on its surroundings.
People already live in the area and the infrastructure is already there. Roads, schools, hospitals etc are built. We are talking about Mayroyd here, not an isolated island in the north sea.
A developer being forced to hand over 4 properties to a social landlord doesn't bring any improvements to all the things I have mentioned. All it means is that his costs rise and that has to be recovered by increasing the cost of all the other properties on a development.
Because the infrastructure is already in place all the extra council tax charged to the new occupiers of these properties should be enough to cover the costs to the council of the extra inhabitants.
Its legalised blackmail pure and simple. "Yes you can have planning permission but there are a few things we would like you build for us first"
Posted by Mike
This seems to have been Calderdale policy for some time now. I mentioned it in a previous post in June 2005 after applications were forwarded for developments on Cragg Road and it was a pre-requisite for the development now proceeding on Spring Grove. It would be interesting to hear if any of these 'covenants' are ever actually implemented
Posted by Paul
1. The infrastructure isn't there, that's the point. You've got a single track road that passes over a bridge that's quickly falling into the Calder.
2. Nobody is being blackmailed. If I you put extra strain on a small town it's existing residents who feel it first. Contributing to any impact makes good sense.
3. We have very strict planning regulations to protect our town and it's character. We have elected representatives to act on our behalf and they do a reasonably good job. A free for all would be a disaster.
4. A lot of the concern about local kids being priced out of the market ignores the fact that their parents bought very nice houses up Eaves and Heptonstall for two grand. You could say what goes around comes around, but they do need support.
5. If we're serious about meeting the need for social housing we could build on existing land. 150 could go on Browns, up to 30 would fit onto what was the old High Streets (which were cleared for social housing decades ago). There's room for 50 around Heppy club. Realistically, half a dozen on a dirt track won't make the difference.
Posted by Nicola
Thank you Paul - finally a sensible post back which gets the point entirely!
For the record, we are still pursuing with the council. The fact that the existing planning has expired hopefully means that it will not get through a second time. If the company has failed to do anything since the approval was given last time, I can't imagine it shows any real commitment to the land or the area. As Paul says, there are plenty of derelict land areas in the surrounding vicinity which would really benefit from redevelopment. The wildlife corridor alongside the river isn't one of them.
Posted by Paul
I think the current landowners could build a great deal of goodwill locally if they sold or donated the green belt land back to the community. This would be great PR for Revegate and for Mr. Clyndes. With a small footbridge, some fencing and planting, we could have a fantastic nature reserve spanning both banks of the river - almost in the centre of town.
In return they could ask to extend their plans at the clog factory, building over the small Burnley Road car park (which is dangerous to use anyway) and on the small pocket beyond the current containers. This faces the substation and so the reserve would have a logical start and end. They'd get an extra 16-20 units and we'd get a nature reserve.
Posted by Johnny Marascalco
Paul, are you certain that this area is designated as "green belt land"? It would be very odd that planning permission had already been granted for development on green belt land.
If planning permission has already been granted, and subsequently expired, this is not a valid reason to refuse a fresh application.
To be honest, I don't see why the current landowners would benefit from any goodwill generated by such a gesture, objectors are not likely to look more favourably on other projects as a result. All they would really be guaranteed is 2 minutes of publicity, a brief sense of civic pride, and a hefty invoice for the landscaping work being suggested.
As far as a need for developers to contribute to local infrastructure is concerned, access to the site is not going to be a cost borne by the local authority, and therefore not something that requires a bung from the developer.
There is also something of a paradox about this supposed extra strain on local infrastructure. If half a dozen units won't make a difference to the availability of affordable housing, then they are also going to make no impact on local infrastructure either.
Response received from the council
The area has been designated as a wildlife corridor for some time, it was designated as such in our old Unitary Development Plan from 1997 and continues to be in the 2006 Replacement Plan. One of the conditions of the permission for Walkleys Mill requires a landscaping scheme, including future maintenance and management, for the strip of land between the mill running down towards Station Road, to be approved by us as part of that development.
You can access this information via our website by searching on planning application number 04/02688.
I note there is a public meeting to discuss planning in Hebden this week, which will be useful to air concerns.
Posted by Paul D
Sorry Johnny I've been away and this is a bit long-winded, I think Nicola got some of your points, but to clarify some others, with further apologies if it looks a bit like I'm arguing with all your points, I think they're all valid:
"If planning permission has already been granted, and subsequently expired, this is not a valid reason to refuse a fresh application".
True, but the original plan had no provision for housing outside the footprint of the old mill - so it'd be a different application, not simply a case of resubmission. Any fresh application would be to build houses where you're currently not allowed to.
"I don't see why the current landowners would benefit from any goodwill generated by such a gesture, objectors are not likely to look more favourably on other projects as a result."
Securing the land between Hawclough and Mayroyd for its aesthetic and amenity value would be a huge goodwill gesture. Although you're right in that each application is judged on its merits, I think this developer could really change how they're percieved locally by considering this.
"a hefty invoice for the landscaping work being suggested."
It's in the old plan anyway - they'd just transfer the responsibility for looking after it to the public. So pass it on to us and save themselves the bill.
"access to the site is not going to be a cost borne by the local authority, and therefore not something that requires a bung from the developer."
So who pays to pick the bridge out of the Calder when it's fallen in? The land in question could take a few houses, but the road and bridge can't. Also, a bung is a bit loaded, there's no corruption here, just consideration of a range of impacts.
"If half a dozen units won't make a difference to the availability of affordable housing, then they are also going to make no impact on local infrastructure either."
The units would make the development profitable. At the moment you've got an old mill on a bad bend, in an area full of empty mill apartments. If Calderdale would cut a deal it would secure this land for the future. Acess from Carr Lane (I think I said Raw Lane earlier) is better, Calderdale runs its own HGVs over there at the momenet so can't really object on the junction or the bridge. Also, half a dozen houses isn't much unless you're one of half a dozen homeless families needing one. Mytholmroyd has good services and is actually soaking up those priced out of Hebden already. You can walk to the station so sell them on to commuters - isn't that what people do with social housing?
Finally, the land has now been cleared of vegetation, so unless this is a cunning ploy to plant new wild grasses and some trees to replace those dropped, I can smell a sale sign. Some poor sod will possibly get landed with this pig in a poke of a development. If Calderdale want to stop Hebden Bridge merging with Mytholmroyd they need to get this issue sorted. Now would be a good time.
Posted by Johnny Marascalco
I appreciate what you're saying, but if it is there in black and white that this exact area cannot have houses built on it due to existing planning conditions, then why would the developers bother wasting their time preparing a scheme for it?
There seems to be a confusion regarding a property developer as a business, and a person working for said business. A business like this will not change how they are perceived by making such gestures, especially when it will all be undermined by the negative publicity surrounding the next project. Given the kind of commentary that property developers receive on this forum, they are completely mistrusted as a whole and no goodwill gesture by a single company can transform such an opinion.
With regard to the bridge and access, the Roads Dept will obviously be involved in assessing any application, and if their engineers declare that the road or bridge cannot sustain the traffic, the application will be refused. The developers are undoubtedly aware this, and would not bother preparing an application if it was to fail on such grounds. They must either have a solution, or they are idiots. Which do you think might be the correct answer?
If you read back, my comment on the impact on local services was addressing the points made about this development putting extra strain on local services which would affect existing residents, whilst not making a difference to local affordable housing stock. It can't do both really, can it?
Posted by Warren
Well, the developer has been very busy the last 2 days digging trenches and continuing to clear the land. The trenches are 1/2 meter deep. Is this them marking out there plans for their development?
Posted by Paul D
Re: if they're idiots or have a solution. I think the latter. The bridge was not cited as the access point on any agreed plans and there's no provision for a road up from Carr Lane, so they'll have to use Crow Nest Bridge and would only develop the site if this had been, or was likely to be agreed.
Re: the trenches. I haven't seen them but this sounds like the footings going in. I can only assume that this is taking place with full permission from CMBC. I'm also assuming the site is clearly idenetified as a construction area, that the appropriate safety fencing has been erected around it (to protect the public from falling into these new excavations) and that hard hats, high visibility vests and other safety equipment is currently in use. Otherwise someone is breaking the law and work could be stopped.
Posted by Elaine P
The work was still going on yesterday, Monday 14th. It's definitely not trenches for footings as they've now exposed a large area of concrete which was about a metre below ground level.
There's no safety fencing signs or anything on the site and the land directly borders the cycle track!
Posted by Paul D
Ah - there's an old goyt and a sluice on there somewhere linked to the old mills that stood either side of the river. It could have a concrete cap on it.
Although it's not an offence to start work on a site prior to gaining consent, if there's a risk to the public this should be raised with the relevant authorities. Not sure how big the sluice is, but you don't lift a lid on one. If you look over the blackpit aqueduct (on riverside school side) you'll see the carved head of the guy who drowned rescuing a girl who got washed into the sluice that used to exit Bridge Mill and she ended up in blackpit whirlpool (where the rivers meet). She lived he died. Mayroyd sluice is dry - but dangerous. You certainly don't want your kids near one!
Posted by Warren
I suspect that the developers are trying to claim that the site is Brown field and not Green field. That is why they have destroyed all signs of Wildlife trees etc on the site, and then left the concrete base showing
Posted by Nicola
The council are keeping a close eye on the activity on the land adjacent to the footpath. However, they have also asked local residents to keep them informed of any changes/further activity so that they can act quickly.
If you wish to object to the activity taking place on the site, please take the time to visit Calderdale Council's site and lodge your objection, this will raise the investigation of this to a high priority and ensure we have the Council's full support that any activity taking place is done legall and within the current planning regulations.
Hebweb News - Tree felling at Mayroyd
'Double dealing' Mayroyd claim - from Hebweb Mill Pond coverage