PLANS to flatten a Bradford social club to make way for a food store will go before a planning panel yet again next week.
Proposals to build a Heron food store on the site of Holme Wood Social Club on Broadstone Way date back several years, and have proved hugely controversial.
The latest version of the plan will go before Bradford Council’s Bradford Area Planning Panel next week – and planning officers have recommended the scheme be approved.
The original plans, submitted by J Cordingley, of Crag Investments in early 2020, would have seen the pub knocked down and a development including the new food store and three other shops.
That plan was approved by the Council’s Regulatory and Appeals Committee in June.
But in August the Committee took the unusual decision to bring the application back so members could re-assess their decision.
It came after concerns were raised that when the plans were first discussed, members had not taken into account the Tong and Holme Wood Neighborhood Plan.
After the second debate, members voted to refuse the plans due to the impact the new shops would have on the viability of existing shops in the area – which the neighborhood plan says should be refurbished and expanded.
This decision went to appeal, but the appeal was dismissed by a planning inspector, who said there was not enough detail on how the development would impact Holme Wood’s existing shops.
A second application was submitted last year – and omitted the other three shops. It means the 402 square meter Heron and its car park would be the only remaining aspect of the previous plan.
Council responds to claim it ‘failed’ the people of Holme Wood
A report to the planning panel says eight people have objected to the plan, and the Council has received a 136-signature petition demanding the plans be refused “but giving no planning reasons”.
Objectors argue it will cause extra traffic, harm other shops in the area and lead to the loss of an important community facility.
Three people have written in support, claiming the Heron would mean people don’t have to travel as far for their shopping and that the shop would provide competition for the “lack-luster offerings” in Holme Wood.
A report into the application by planners says: “The existing Holme Wood local center is identified as being weak in terms of its retail offer.
“The need for investment in this center and the need for development of this large site weigh heavily in favor of this development.
“The existing building plays a negligible role in the center and is already in a state of disrepair.”
The panel meets in City Hall at 10am on Wednesday.