Clayton Fields site off Halifax Road, Edgerton


Planning Application: 2022/91822   

Application by Prospect Estates Ltd, the owner of the Clayton Fields site off Halifax Road, Edgerton, be let off £362,000 of Section 106 payments to Kirklees Council

To see the full planning application click here.

Huddersfield Civic Society has strongly objected to an application by Prospect Estates Ltd, the owner of the Clayton Fields site off Halifax Road, Edgerton, be let off £362,000 of payments to Kirklees Council in return for permission to build 41 houses on that site.

The money would go towards affordable housing, education and local transport.

The developer claims to have incurred over £400,000 of unanticipated costs in managing the site since 2015 and sees this as reason to be let off. We see no evidence for site management having taken place, dispute the calculation of the claimed costs and object to the principle that a developer can renege on its commitments because of its own actions, or inactions, after gaining planning permission.

That agreement was reached in 2015 after a lengthy court battle against local people wishing to maintain this beautiful open space only a mile from Huddersfield town centre. The funding, known as a Section 106 payment, was to compensate Kirklees Council for the cost of providing local school, transport and affordable housing. After winning their court battle the developers felled several delightful mature trees but nature has since been reclaiming the site.​

Here’s the full text of our response:

Huddersfield Civic Society strongly objects to this application to be let off an estimated £362K of S106 charges understood to be agreed with Kirklees Council in 2015.

The developer has made no visible progress on the plans for which they received consent following the Supreme Court judgement. Since 2015, and the vandalism at that time of felling mature trees along the site’s Halifax road boundary, the land has returned slowly to nature with no obvious management or security costs.
The only costs we believe the developer may have incurred, other than re footpath route changes a couple of years ago (which actually aided the developer by freeing the alignments of the consented roads and house sites) are fencing off some minor site entry works some years ago.

Looking at the claimed costs of £420,000 these look to be largely, if not entirely, management fees, costs and loan interest. All costs and charges appear to be between parties which may be linked to the development. A £25k loan is said to have become a £173k cost (this flat-rate interest we calculate as in excess of 90%pa!), the difference of £148K being part of the reason to ask to be let off the S106 payments.

The other claimed costs are equally invalid. We ask that the application be refused.