Thursday, 13 February 2014

The Poor Standard of Leeds Highways Roadworks 2014



I've uploaded this video because I am sick to death of the shoddy work carried out by Leeds Highways Department.  

This is the full text of what I wrote to go with the video I uploaded to YouTube, but was too long for it all to be included.  There is a lot more I would like to say and this is only the beginning as I am most unhappy with the poor standard of surveying and engineering execution carried out by Leeds Highways.

This video is of a corner at the end of the street where I live, but it could probably be any number of places in Leeds, or elsewhere in the UK.

This corner had been all broken down and in need of work for several years, so after I had mentioned it to my local Councillors and the people in Highways it was eventually done (probably no connection) in late 2012.

I was very disappointed to see that the level of the drain had been raised by two inches or more so that the rainwater in the gutter would flow away from it, and on either side, huge puddles developed.  I drew this to the attention of my local Councillors again, as well as the Highways people.  I had apologies for the standard of work from the Councillors (not their fault) but heard nothing from Highways.  In the early summer of 2013 a new drain was sunk in the gutter on the far side of the black and white posts you can see in the video only a few feet from the existing drain, relieving that sink, but not the side shown here.  The level issue, the primary cause, was not addressed.

Late in 2013 a third set of works were carried out here when the entire area of the bus 'circus' ~ the wide area with laybys for buses to turn round ~ up to the crossroad junction was resurfaced, including the drain by the black and white post again.

For anyone who gives a fig about standards of road building or accountability for public works, this is not an acceptable way to carry out these kind of works.

The supervising engineers for works such as this should properly survey the levels and plan for the camber to drain towards gutters which then feed into drains.  All this requires careful attention to the use of spirit levels and surveying equipment.  Not seriously difficult, but something which just takes proper attention to the detail required.  Judging by this work done here, no-one properly attended to the levels involved.

This is absolutely basic stuff.  You may say, Does it really matter?  Well this is money not being well spent, and physical infrastructure being built to a lower standard of function and durability than could be attained with exactly the tools and equipment if the supervising engineer did what he should.  In other words, the people who are doing these jobs are cutting corners, not paying attention to details that the Romans knew about when they built their roads two thousand years ago, and not producing work up to the the industry standard.

And what is worse, the supervisors and bigwigs of the Highways Department don't even check the work to see if the standards are being adhered to. 

A few yards further along from where I videoed this, in the bus layby, a drain had its 60 year old drain cover replaced with a modern one (which is far less aesthetically designed) and yet the drain itself is still blocked and another long puddle stretches along where the bus pulls up for the passengers to get on.  (They rebuilt the drain cover, but didn't clean it out, like putting new wall paper over old without any preparation at all.)  My neighbout actually mentioned this to me, so I am not a lonely anorak complaining in the dark.  I rarely use that particular stop for boarding, only alighting, so I hadn't noticed that the bus sprays the waiting passengers from the long puddle by the kerb with the blocked drain when it pulls up.

These new drain, 'gully grates' I believe they are called, do not appear to have hinges on them so far as I can tell, so they cannot be lifted for drain cleaning like the old ones which did have hinges.    Whatever the case, this drain is totally blocked and should have been dealt with when the road was resurfaced.

This is work that was done in about November of 2013, so it is extremely recent.  And a few yards further along from that, at the pedestrian crossing, the dropped curb has another one of these long puddles that settles along it just like the others I have already drawn attention to because of badly aligned levels, and so pedestrians are forced to walk through or step over these puddles when there has been rain (and we've had a lot this winter).

These kind of poor standards are endemic in the road works that Leeds Highways Department are responsible for, and they are wasting our money while giving us poor quality service.

The latest thing I have noticed is that perfectly sound cast iron drain covers which have a certain aestetic and a patina of age which you simply couldn't buy, have started to be replaced with modern steel gratings which are harsh and jagged in appearance compared to the more attractive traditional designs which have lain in our streets for, in some cases, over a century.  The drain covers which have been changed in this end section of Queenswood Drive had been there for over 60 years and were in sound condition, just like all those along our road, every thirty yards or so.  It is not just the traditional appearance which is important here, but the cost or replacing perfectly sound street furniture with new stuff that must be costing the city a great deal of money.  If a new steel drain cover cost £20, (I believe it could be more) and there are about 120 drain grilles per mile, then the costs of replacement would be £2,400 per mile or more.  This is a guesstimate, but food for thought nonetheless.

Council officials have given me absurd excuses as to why this is being done, such as ~ people steal the old cast iron ones.  I ask people all the time if they have ever seen a missing cast iron drain cover, and never has anyone answered positively to that, so I have to question this claim that many go missing.  I am in the process of being about to enter an FOI request as to how many of these have been stolen in the last five years and await the response.

And the idea of removing them all so that they can't be stolen is, I have to say, perverse... I mean ~ how many have been stolen, and how much did that cost, compared to the automatic removal of probably thousands already and the cost of replacing them with these new ones?  I don't know the figures yet, but it comes down to the cost of putting in new ones against retaining perfectly sound ones and only paying for the (somewhat mythical I suspect) grates which are claimed to go missing. 

There is no need to replace these cast iron grates.  There are examples around Headingley and Leeds which are over a hundred years old, and they are barely distinguishable from those that are 60 years old.  In other words, these things have a usable life of well over a century and almost never go wrong or break, and yet Highways have been stripping them out and replacing them for the last year and a half or so with little or no public consultation, it just happens and then it's a fait accompli.

At a time of unprecedented cutbacks in public expenditure, this department is spending money on unnecessary replacement of perfectly sound and aesthetic street furniture.  This is just ludicrous and one has to ask who is getting the contracts for the replacements?

Then they say that the old ones are curved so they are dangerous.  By no means all are curved, a good proportion are actually flat, but those that are curved were made that way so that water more easily flows into them, and they have been an accepted standard design across the whole of Britain since at least the late nineteenth century.  There are places in old Woodhouse and Headingley Hill where examples of these which are from the 1880s are still in place and in one piece.  To attempt to expunge this historic design of street furniture from our cities and towns on the basis of some trumped up health and safety excuse is absurd.  How much would it cost to replace the at least millions, probably tens of millions, and possibly hundreds of millions of these cast iron grilles throughout Yorkshire and the rest of the UK?  It reminds one of Pol Pot's attempt at creating a Year Zero, seeking to entirely wipe out the past.  When one pays it a little attention it not only appears to be a completely bizarre and inappropriate obsession with deleting and overwriting the past, but one has to question where such a motivation comes from when there are so many other more important things for the Council's various departments to be putting their limited resources to.

At the very least the Highways Department is out of touch with the reality of the present time and needs to be reined in from profligate spending and made to concentrate on the engineering standards of its works which are erratic at best.

At worst one is led to question the motives for such policies which are both unnecessary and wasteful of the public purse. 

I have previously challenged Highways on their removal of stone paving and now they are removing other heritage street furniture unnecessarily, assuming perhaps that no-one will notice, even in conservation areas where such things should not be permitted.

Well, people do notice.  My father was a roads engineer in the West Africa when I was a child, and he built better roads in the Nigerian bush fifty years ago than most of these contractors do for Leeds in the 21st century.

It is a scandal that these public servants fail to properly justify the trust that is given to them and wilfully misuse that position to produce shoddy workmanship and unnecessary destruction of our traditional heritage.

Complain about this waste of our public resources to your local Councillor,

and the

Chief Executive of Leeds City Council
tom.riordan@leeds.gov.uk

Leader of the Council
keith.wakefield@leeds.gov.uk

or Head of Highways
richard.lewis@leeds.gov.uk

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Conservation Objections to Planning Applications in Headingley, Weetwood and Hyde Park and Woodhouse



Conservation objections to Planning Applications in Headingley, Weetwood and Hyde Park and Woodhouse

I am posting this as a basis for objections to the recent NGT conservation and listed building planning applications.  I will be adding to the information as it is not quite complete, but since time is short I thought it better to put up a partially completed set of objections than none at all.

Please feel free to copy and paste sections to make your own objections.  Send them giving also your name and address to  
npcu@communities.gov.uk
and quote the application numbers where applicable.
 
The deadline is not absolutely clear at present, but if they are sent by Friday 8 Nov afternoon we are hoping they will be accepted.  Send them even after this date and they may be accepted for a while.

Draft suggestions follow, Headingley objections now added.

It is possible to make a block objection to the entire route, however if you can add detail on specific applications and point out features ignored in the applications, such as mature trees and heritage stone pavements, or how it would affect pedestrians, that will help. 


>>>>>>>>>>

I am writing to object to all 34 (as I understand the number to be) of the conservation and listed building applications.  It is my understanding that a block objection can be made in one email to all the applications.

As is clearly the case, all these applications are in conservation areas and a number of them apply to listed buildings, and on these grounds I object to them all. 

The A660 is a route through numerous conservation areas, continuous from the Ring Road to the University.  There are some three hundred or more mature trees shown on the NGT design drawings, and there are many of these which have preservation orders on them.  These 34 applications would be responsible for destroying a good many of these fine trees without even identifying them as inevitably having to be felled for the proposed works to go ahead.  Two examples of this are the trees around the wall at Rose Court mansion, the former petrol station and the red brick house backing on to these from Victoria Road, where there is a cluster of mature trees which give character to the area which would entirely be lost should the walls and pillars of Rose Court to be moved, as would be the case to some extent or another all the way along Headingley Lane up Headingley Hill.

The second example is the magnificent stand of mostly horse chestnuts above the retaining wall (a listed application) by no.62 which are probably a hundred and fifty years old.  These would be necessarily destroyed if the trolleybus route were to go through here as they are directly in the path of the proposed route.




HEADINGLEY APPLICATIONS

13/03873/LI | Listed building application for demolition of 45m section of listed wall. (TN071) – 62 Headingley Lane Headingley Leeds LS6 2BU

I object to the destruction of this wall for the proposed trolleybus route road building
This is an old wall that seems to have listed status judging from the application.  It is the boundary for an ancient field.

If it was lost, not only would it strip Headingley of another part of our history and landscape but it would change the character of the area beyond recognition for an entirely speculative road building program for the unproved trolleybus system.

Traffic volume last year was almost 4,000 a day less than it was ten years before.  There is no need for road expansion as proposed.

http://api.dft.gov.uk/v2/trafficcounts/countpoint/id/17374.csv


13/03877/LI | Listed building application for setting back of the twin piers to the north of Rose Court (TN088) – Rose Court Headingley Lane Headingley Leeds LS6 1BN

I object to the moving or setting back of the piers on Rose Court mansion, Headingley Lane
These piers are listed structures and form part of the curtilage space around Rose Court.  There is not a very large distance between the piers and the mansion, there was enough for access of a horse drawn vehicle when this was built  and moving them back would cramp the front of the building and make the proportion meaningless.  It is not specified how much space is intended to be taken, but elsewhere the figure of 5 to 10 meters is mentioned.  Even a 3 meter setback would have serious adverse effect on what is after all a listed building and which should be preserved along with its curtilage.


13/03878/LI | Listed building application for set back of up to 70m of associated curtilage along Headingley Lane and up to 65m of associated curtilage down the western extent of Buckingham Road. (TN089) – Buckingham House Headingley Lane Headingley Leeds LS6 1BL

This is a massive proposed change to the character and appearance of the area.  This appears to be a listed building or its curtilage.  If all these conservation and listed building applications on Headingley Lane were to be implemented, one of the finest Victorian areas of character would be lost almost altogether.

This kind of destruction to heritage is not acceptable to local residents who wish to retain the heritage and architectural history of our local environment.


13/03879/LI | Listed building application for set back of up to 55m of associated curtilage along Headingley Lane and up to 80m of associated curtilage down the eastern extent of Buckingham Road. (TN090) – Ford House Buckingham Road Headingley Leeds LS6 1BP

Amongst other things, this application would take the children's playground at the northern end of the school grounds.  In terms of proportion and aesthetics the building up of the road above the school would look obviously incongruous and disproportionate.
 
This is a massive proposed change to the character and appearance of the area.  This appears to be a listed building or its curtilage.  If all these conservation and listed building applications on Headingley Lane were to be implemented, one of the finest Victorian areas of character would be lost almost altogether.

This kind of destruction to heritage is not acceptable to local residents who wish to retain the heritage and architectural history of our local environment.



13/03914/LI | Listed building application for the fixture of a stud anchor for Overhead Line Equipment onto the façade of the building, approximately 6.8m or above from ground level in height, as part of the Leeds NGT scheme. (TN030) – 79-83A Otley Road Headingley Leeds LS6 3PS

I object to this because these kind of fixings inflict permanent damage on listed buildings which are supposed to be protected from alterations.



13/03952/CA | Conservation area application for the demolition of house and part of boundary wall. (TN065) – 6 Wood Lane Headingley Leeds LS6 2AE

There are several reasons I object to the destruction of this fine Victorian house dating from approximately 1880-85.

Firstly it is occupied by some seven residents, including one who has lived there for twenty years and two children who go to the local school Shire Oak.

It was possibly the first house built on Wood Lane and set in its mature garden gives a quality to the local environment and heritage which is above much of that which is around especially the nearby Arndale Centre.

Not the least reason to preserve this functional and attractive building are the two mature trees in the front garden, especially the magnificent copper beech, which were probably planted at the time of building and thus would be about 130 years old, in their prime and adding great character to the area which could not be replaced with container grown trees.

Destroying this beautiful building for a speculative trolleybus bypass would be nothing short of vandalism. 



13/03955/CA | Conservation area application for demolition of building’s southerly extension and southern curtilage. (TN069) – 40 Otley Road Headingley Leeds LS6 2AL

The loss of the enclosed curtilage behind the wall would have a detrimental effect on the amenity and proportion of the space here, especially as it would be taken by road, trolleybus and overhead cable.  The wall gives character to the area and is congruent with the character of Alma Road.

There are also two fine cherry trees which enhance the space and should be retained, and two more mature trees within the curtilage by the Alma Road entrance.


13/03957/CA | Conservation area application for the demolition of ruined structures. (TN074) – Outbuildings To The East Of 35 Headingley Lane Leeds LS6 1PF

I object to the proposed demolition of these buildings.
They are some of the oldest on Headingley Lane, built from traditional local materials.  They have great character and should be listed and retained so that they can be redeveloped.  It is my belief that the prime reason these buildings have been allowed to decay is because the uncertain future and planning blight which has hung over the whole of this site due to endless ruminations about widening the road for the Supertram or trolleybus.

These destructive speculations should be cast aside and the redevelopment of the site within listed building guidelines should be encouraged, thereby retaining as much of the heritage character for the area as possible, without destructive road widening.



13/03958/CA | Conservation area application for the demolition of the outbuilding adjoined to the north of the building and curtilage. (TN075) – 31 Headingley Lane Leeds LS6 1BN


I object to the proposed demolition of these buildings.
They are some of the oldest on Headingley Lane, built from traditional local materials.  They have great character and should be listed and retained so that they can be redeveloped.  It is my belief that the prime reason these buildings have been allowed to decay is because the uncertain future and planning blight which has hung over the whole of this site due to endless ruminations about widening the road for the Supertram or trolleybus.

These destructive speculations should be cast aside and the redevelopment of the site within listed building guidelines should be encouraged, thereby retaining as much of the heritage character for the area as possible, without destructive road widening.


13/03959/CA | Conservation area application for 5-10m set back of up to 300m of non-listed curtilage along Headingley Lane. (TN076) – Curtilage To The South Of 35A Headingley Lane Leeds LS6 1BN

I am objecting to this conservation planning application because of the following reasons.

On the NGT design drawings I was of the understanding that the proposed setback was in the region of 3-4 meters.   That was bad enough.  The very concept of setting back such a long section of wall on such a steeply sided hill with so many buildings of architectural interest and antiquity in the way is flawed in terms of overall design.  It does not work with the proportions of the land and the planning authorities should be working on retaining and restoring some of the richest local heritage we have.

To extend an already ugly and ill proportioned plan from 3 to 5 or even 10 meters would project a platform out over and above the old High School grounds and look utterly bizarre, dwarfing all the original 19th century buildings like some giant flyover which would require a massive built up wall that would tower over the surviving lower buildings it would abut.  The existing wall is already high on the natural contour of the land which was built up when this was constructed in the 19th century.  The designers have not thought about the impact on the context of existing surroundings but only used them as if they were a blank canvas for their plans.  The proposed road would look entirely out of place and utterly change the character of our community forever.  It must not be allowed to proceed.


13/03963/CA | Conservation area for the demolition of boundary wall to South. (TN078) – 5 Alma Road Leeds LS6 2AH

I am writing to object to the proposed demolition of the wall on the boundary of 5 Alma Road as this and other stone walls contribute greatly to the character of the area.  This encloses the private space of this house which has nine or ten car parking spaces which would be lost.

Also there are two mature trees adjacent to the wall which greatly enhance the area.


13/03964/CA | Conservation area application for the demolition of boundary walls to the north of 2 Shire Oak Road. (TN079) – Shire Oak Road Headingley Leeds

I am objecting to the demolition of this wall as it is a long standing part of the visual amenity, probably built for the Vicarage in the 1880s with a mature hedge including mature trees, the whole of which contributes to the character of one of the finest streets in Headingley.

Trees do not seem to be included in these conservation planning applications, and I believe that in the vicinity of Shire Oak Road there are trees with conservation orders on them.  I object most strongly to removal of any trees, and most especially those which have conservation orders.  Replacement with container grown saplings can never match trees of genuine antiquity even should they be 3 or 4 meters tall.   It is my belief that to suggest that they can is a morally bankrupt and fraudulent assertion.  Destroying a present good, the century plus Victorian trees, for the speculation that replacements may or may not come to fruition a lifetime from now is a preposterous plan.



13/03965/CA | Conservation Area application for demolition of two boundary walls to south of 6 Wood Lane. (TN080) – Shire Oak Street Leeds LS6 2AE

I am objecting to the demolition of these walls as they, along with all the other walls and buildings (such as 6 Wood Lane itself) contribute to the character and gestalt of the conservation area.  There are also in the vicinity several trees which are fine specimens.  This area is all well kept and a welcome contribution of mature visual amenity so close to the busy and drab Arndale Centre.


13/03968/CA | Conservation area application for demolition of boundary wall to front. (TN083) – 42/44 Otley Road Headingley Leeds LS6 2AL

I am objecting to the demolition of this wall as it, along with all the other walls and buildings (such as 42/44 Otley Road itself) contribute to the character and gestalt of the conservation area.  There are also behind the wall several trees which are fine specimens.  This area is all well kept and a welcome contribution of mature visual amenity so close to the busy and drab Arndale Centre.

If all these applications were to go through the area would be unrecognisable afterwards.  It is disgraceful the way Metro and NGT want to destroy the fabric of our community


13/03979/CA | Conservation area application for the demolition of the red-bricked gatehouse building. (TN084) – The Lodge 31 Headingley Lane Headingley Leeds LS6 1BN

I am objecting to this destructive proposal which seeks to make way for road widening.

This is a fine house of good character at least a century old and apparently structurally sound, set proportionally well in the contour of the land.  It would be better to see it brought back into use and retain the character of the area rather than be demolished and have the wall set back up between 5 and 10 meters thereby utterly changing the character of the area beyond all recognition.

All along this section there are many mature trees which greatly enhance the amenity.  If the site along Headingley Lane could be free of planning blight and could receive some listing protection for its historical status then it could be redeveloped profitably for residential use or business.

To lose all these buildings, trees and antique structures would be a major loss to the heritage of the community.


13/03980/CA | Conservation area application for demolition of the northern section of the building. (TN094) – 35A Headingley Lane Leeds LS6 1PF

am writing to object to this application because this house built in original local stone materials in the nineteenth century, has great character and is a significant part of the visual amenity of the area.  It should be freed from the planning blight which has beset this whole site for so many years and be allowed to be redeveloped within conservation and listed building guidelines, restoring it as it deserves to be and converted to a residential property or small business.  It should be retained as part of the heritage which characterises the area.  Within its curtilage and locality there are also a number of fine mature trees which would be lost if the wall had to be set back.  Since established trees are sensitive to building excavation and construction several yards away from their trunks the tree loss would not be confined to the road expansion area.  Also it is not made clear how far the walls are intended to be set back and thus how much of this building would be demolished.  In 13/03959/CA |  Conservation area application is made for 5-10m set back of up to 300m of non-listed curtilage along Headingley Lane.   This is an immense amount and could take up a huge amount of this building.  It seems that the conservation planning applications are making greater demands than was apparent from the NGT drawings which were made available to the public.



13/03981/CA | Conservation area application for the demolition of walling. (TN095) – Walls To The North Of 6 Wood Lane Leeds LS6 2AE

I object to the destruction of these walls as they are a fine part of our local heritage in this conservation area.  Also behind these walls on both sides are a total of about a dozen mature trees which give the area its character.

13/04271/LI | Listed building application for setting back of approximately 105m of walling by up to approximately 5m to Rose Court (TN097) – Rose Court Headingley Lane Headingley Leeds LS6 1BN

I object to this application.  This is a massive length of wall which characterises the whole area.  It is of considerable antiquity and should have some degree of listing or protection.  The amount of proposed setback is indeterminate, different documents suggest anything from up to 3 meters, 5 meters in this case and 5 to 10 meters in another of these applications.  Such vagueness is neither helpful nor encouraging.

This whole length of wall is on a high and steep slope, already built up against the steep gradient.  An extension of 3 to 10 meters would necessitate a huge build up that would absolutely dominate the remainder of the Leeds Girls High School site and totally overshadow it in a most ugly way, destroying the character and nature of this historic site.  The steepness and build up would make the use of any of the several gateway entrances impossible, or at least difficult due to the gradient which would be created from the level of the new road.  As someone with a training in Art and Design it seems to me to have no basis in aesthetics, and is likely to be unfunctional due to its poor proportion and lack of holistic thought in its design.

13/04303/LI | Listed building for the fixture of a stud anchor for Overhead Line Equipment onto the façade of the building, approximately 6.8m or above from ground level in height, as part of the Leeds NGT scheme. (TN100) – Eleanor Lupton Centre Headingley Lane Headingley Leeds LS6 1BN

I object to this on the basis that attaching modern fixings of this nature to a fine old building like this would putting the building at risk of damage as well as actual damage in the unavoidable drilling and so forth to attach equipment, as well as detracting from the appearance of the building.



WEETWOOD APPLICATIONS
13/03880/LI | Listed building application for set back of up to 170m of associated curtilage along Otley Road, Leeds and relocation of this curtilage to a position of up to 10m north-northwest of the current position. (TN091) – Coach House 184 Otley Road Headingley Leeds LS16 5LW

I object to this application.  This is an immense length of wall which largely determines the nature of the local character.  The application to set the wall back 10m northwest makes no sense, since the wall itself runs only a few degrees north of west itself.  There is not enough room in front of the Coach House for a setback of this magnitude.  The existing curtilage is quite limited around the front side of this building.  It is questionable to talk about ‘relocating this curtilage’ as that is the defined space around the listed building.  If the space around the building is lost, then it is lost.  There may be space at the back of the building, but that is probably already spoken for, and in any case this could not compensate for lost buffer space at the front either in aesthetic or practical terms.  I would also strongly suspect that the disturbance and upheaval necessitated by the proposed works would be detrimental to the business.  I understand that local small businesses have made representations about this, and clearly the shops opposite here at West Park would be affected by the massive amount of traffic that would be created both for the rebuilding of the wall as well as the road widening all along this route.

13/03887/LI | Listed building application for relocation of the horse trough from its existing site to a position approximately 8m to the north-west. (TN093) – Opposite 62 Otley Road Headingley Leeds LS6 3QG

I object to this application because the only reason to recess this horse trough would be to widen the road, which would necessitate loss of grass verge and narrowing of the pavement.  Also only a few yards from here is the marvellous old gatehouse on the cornepr of St Chad’s Drive which would have the pavement in front of it reduced by approximately half to judge by the NGT drawings.  This is a conservation area York stone pavement, and any narrowing of width at any point along this road would be both a loss of public amenity space by a busy road as well as aesthetic detriment.  Is there a statutory width for pavements beside A roads of this nature?  Too narrow a pavement could be unsafe beside a main road.


13/03966/CA | Conservation area consent for demolition and replacement of boundary walls to west, up to 2.5m from their original location. (TN081) – Weetwood House Court Otley Road Headingley Leeds

In the NGT design drawings this section of wall is designated as being set back only 1.8m.
This is a fine traditional wall and its setting back would be of detriment to the properties behind it, and the aesthetic proportions, besides which there are at least four mature trees and several areas of mature garden which would all be lost, again none of this is mentioned in the application and their loss would be of detriment to the local character.  Certainly no-one bought a property here expecting to lose part of their frontage and have a long period of building upheaval and passage of heavy vehicles for the road developments associated with the trolleybus route.

13/03967/CA | Conservation area application for the set back of boundary walls, up to 4.5m from their original location. (TN082) – 1 & 1A Holly Bank Otley Road Headingley Leeds

I object to this application because it would change the character of the area.   This fine row o houses has a well defined wall dating from its construction, and the loss of this curtilage would detract from the character of the whole row of Holly Bank as well as the area.  It is a busy junction and the presence within the front garden of this property of a magnificent tree, which may well date back to the building of Holly Bank in the nineteenth century is of great value.  This is one of the finest trees on the Otley Road, and its prominent position dominates the visual appearance of the area.  Anything more than light pruning would be entirely unacceptable, and yet it would appear likely that this majestic being would suffer destruction without even being mentioned in the planning application which seeks to destroy it.


HYDE PARK AND WOODHOUSE APPLICATIONS
13/03875/LI | Listed building application for relocation of approximately 9m length of listed wall and one gate pier for reinstatement to a location of less than 5m to the north-east of its current location. (TN077) – 1 Kingston Terrace Woodhouse Leeds LS2 9BW

The curtilage space by the wall around Kingston Terrace is clearly defined and well proportioned.  Taking a gate pier out of its context would cause the original layout to be entirely lost.  With the moving of 9m of wall, which is almost thirty feet the structure would be destroyed,  and not least there would inevitably be a loss of the extremely valuable parking spaces so well placed as they are now.


13/03890/LI | Listed building application for the fixture of a stud anchor for Overhead Line Equipment onto the façade of the building, approximately 6.8m or above from ground level in height, as part of the Leeds NGT scheme. (TN016) – The Library Public House 229 Woodhouse Lane Woodhouse Leeds LS2 3AP

13/03941/LI | Listed building application for the fixture of a stud anchor for Overhead Line Equipment onto the façade of the building, approximately 6.8m or above from ground level in height, as part of the Leeds NGT scheme. (TN052) – Emmanuel Church Cavendish Road Woodhouse Leeds LS1 3EW

13/03942/LI | Listed building application for the fixture of a stud anchor for Overhead Line Equipment onto the facade of the building, approximately 6.8m or above from ground level in height, as part of the Leeds NGT scheme. (TN053) – Parkinson Building Woodhouse Lane Leeds LS2 9JT

13/03943/LI | Listed building application for the fixture of a stud anchor for Overhead Line Equipment onto the façade of the building, approximately 6.8m or above from ground level in height, as part of the Leeds NGT scheme. (TN054) – Blenheim Baptist Church Blackman Lane Leeds LS2 9ER

13/03944/LI | Listed building for the fixture of a stud anchor for Overhead Line Equipment onto the façade of the building, approximately 6.8m or above from ground level in height, as part of the Leeds NGT scheme. (TN055) – 177 – 179 Woodhouse Lane Woodhouse Leeds LS2 3AR

I object to all these five above on the basis that attaching modern fixings of this nature to fine old listed buildings like these would putting the building at risk of damage in the future as well as actual damage in the unavoidable drilling and so forth to attach equipment, as well as detracting from the appearance of the building.

13/03915/LI | The fixture of a stud anchor for Overhead Line Equipment onto the façade of the building, approximately 6.8m or above from ground level in height, as part of the Leeds NGT scheme. (TN031) – Pack Horse Inn 208 Woodhouse Lane Woodhouse Leeds LS2 9DX

I object to this on the basis that attaching modern fixings of this nature to a fine old building like this would putting the building at risk of damage as well as actual damage in the unavoidable drilling and so forth to attach equipment, as well as detracting from the appearance of the building.

13/03953/CA | Conservation area application for demolition of building. (TN066) – 2 Victoria Road / 25A Headingley Lane Leeds LS6 1BL

I object to the demolition of this building.  It is in good repair and used for a local service.  It is in the character of much of the original local building of the area from the late Victorian or Edwardian period and it would be a loss to the local character were it to be demolished for the purpose of making an enlarged road junction, which would inevitably be less pedestrian friendly, which is an important part of the character of the area as it has been up to now.

13/03954/CA | Conservation area application for demolition of house, building and former petrol station forecourt. (TN067) – 27 Headingley Lane Leeds LS6 1BL
13/03956/CA | Conservation area application for demolition of shop buildings. (TN070) – 11-23 Headingley Lane Leeds LS6 1BL
I object to these two applications as these are valuable premises for small businesses who cannot afford higher rents.  There is a thriving local community around here which would be severely damaged by the loss of these amenities.  In addition, the redevelopment of this area and the old wall around Rose Court would mean the loss of a fair number of trees.  At least four mature trees in the grounds of the house on Victoria Road and the former filling station would be destroyed.

Adjacent to this is the last remnant of the garden of Rose Court, a listed building.  About 75 meters of garden would be lost if the wall had to be set back along with a continuous row of mature and semi mature trees with it.  The entire character of the area as it has evolved over two hundred years would be lost at a stroke.