PROTESTERS in Mirfield are in limbo after claiming a developer has temporarily halted a controversial housing scheme.
A pond which is a habitat for a protected species of newt was found on land behind Lady Heton Drive and Ben Bailey Homes, which wants to build 37 two and three-storey properties, now needs to carry out a conservation survey.
Members of the Lady Heton Action Group said they have been told this is unlikely to be completed before April.
Peter Morgan, of the group, said: “We’ll use this time to ask Kirklees Council to enforce their own planning standards.”
Residents think plans for two and three-storey properties in red brick breach the council’s Unitary Development Plan (UPD).
This says that new homes in residential areas should be in keeping with those that are already there.
Most of the homes around Lady Heton Drive and Lady Heton Grove are stone-fronted bungalows.
The UDP also states there must be 21 metres between the windows of habitable rooms of neighbouring properties.
Campaigners claim a council directive means extensions and conservatories were subsequently excluded from this.
They believe it green-lights the developer to build closer to their homes than should be allowed under the UDP.
MP Simon Reevell backs their claim and said: “There’s no explanation as to why the guidance note should differ so markedly from the original policy.”
Mr Morgan added: “We accept the fact that this development could go ahead because it’s not green belt land.
“We’re trying to get the best deal, not just for ourselves, but for the people who’ll buy these homes and for the town of Mirfield."