A PLANNING appeal has been lodged following Bradford Council's refusal earlier this year to allow the reopening of a quarry in Silsden.

Calvert Architectural Stone Supplies had first applied for planning permission to reopen the 5.9-hectare green belt site at Horn Cragg Quarry, off Fishbeck Lane,  last year.

The applications turned out to be one of the most objected-to planning applications the council has experienced in years. Almost 900 people lodged their opposition to the scheme that would have seen 520,000 tonnes of Yorkshire Stone taken from the site.

The application was eventually withdrawn, but re-emerged earlier this year. The stone firm said that stone that was to be quarried is vital for the maintenance and restoration of stone-built structures, saying there is a “demonstrable need” for it.

They added there would be a maximum of ten HGV movements a day, and that the site would be restored once all the stone was extracted.

But 891 people submitted objections to Bradford Council while fifty-one people wrote in support.

Objectors said the area’s roads were unsuitable for HGVs, and that the scheme would damage the environment and impact local wildlife.

The Environment Agency was also amongst the objectors.

In May this year the planning officers rejected the application saying:  “For such a proposal to be acceptable it needs to be demonstrated that it will not have an unacceptable impact on people or the environment in terms of pollution, flooding or land stability risks, or harm to amenity, heritage assets or their settings, or harm the character of the landscape.

“It is evident the application does have a number of unacceptable adverse impacts, including on the character of the landscape, biodiversity, people, the environment, water, amenity, tourism and recreation."

Officers also questioned why the particular site was so vital to the supply of Yorkshire Stone.

They said: “Although it is accepted there is a need for high-quality dimension stone and walling stone, and that it is preferable that it's locally sourced, it should be noted that the stone is not a scarce mineral. It can be sourced from other quarries within the Bradford district/West Yorkshire and it is arguable there are areas within the Bradford district that are more suitable/sustainable to provide such stone.”

The applicant has now lodged an appeal against the decision and a final decision will be up to the planning inspector. The appeal reference on the council's planning portal is: APP/W4705/W/23/3332884.