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Planning Update: Racecourse Approach, Wetherby (17/02594/OT)

11th July 2020
Planning Update: Racecourse Approach.
The planning application for 800 new houses at Racecourse Approach (application number 17/02594/OT), is due to be considered once more at Leeds City Council Plans Panel on Thursday 16th July.


The planning process is often a tangled web. A decision on an application is rarely the end of the issue. In this case, a condition on the approved plan is now being challenged. The outline application was approved in August 2019 subject to conditions. One of these was an access point to the site from York Road. This was also a requirement specified in the designation of this site in the Leeds City Council Site Allocations Plan (SAP). The applicant, Taylor Wimpey, have tried unsuccessfully to acquire the land necessary to create this access point and are now applying to remove this condition.

Taylor Wimpey have issued a Notice of Appeal against the condition, and the members of the Plans Panel must now consider whether to approve the removal of this condition, or uphold the original condition and have the application proceed to appeal (which will incur costs if they lose).

Due to Covid-19 restrictions, the Plans Panel is being held remotely, but the agenda and webcast are available to view.

The community group Better Wetherby (BW) have been following the progress of this application in detail and have objected to the proposal. This group was established to champion the protection and development the character of Wetherby and District. Earlier this year, Better Wetherby successfully contested an application for housing just north of the local authority boundary in North Yorkshire, at Spofforth Hill. They have been working with their Ward Councillors on this new development in the Racecourse Approach application to have their voices heard.

You can find full details of their campaign on their website.

It is often the case that conditions on planning applications are challenged after an approval has been issued. This can be really challenging for both the local authority, who are trying to reach the best outcome possible, and campaigners, who continue to fight hard for their communities.