Ox Lee and the bridleway which runs past it is one of those quiet little unspoilt backwaters enjoyed by walkers,riders and cyclists who know the best places to go.
Back in August 2014 planning permission was granted for 4 dwellings over 1000 metres along the bridleway at the site of the old farmstead. Remarkably one property has been completed and extensive works have been carried out on two others without any damage to the bridleway(which just shows it can be done). Infact a very wet section of the route was drained and put back in better condition than I’ve ever seen it.
Since my last visit in September 2017 things have gone downhill drastically with the construction of a road over the bridleway. The surface is now made up of road scalpings which are cheap and easily available if you know the right people. Scalpings are also a classified hazardous waste as the coal tar in them is carcinogenic. The use of these materials in a construction project requires an environmental permit to be registered with the Environment Agency
Interestingly the location of the scalpings is over a very wet area of the route and there would seem to be a risk of contaminating the groundwater here with run off from the scalpings. Some areas of the bridleway are covered in large sandstone aggregate which is very difficult to walk over. This seems to be used as a sub base for the scalpings.
Condition 4 in the planning permission notice states
4. Before development commences a full scheme of improvement works to the access
track including appropriate drainage, vegetation clearance and surfacing to make it suitable
for residential traffic use shall be submitted to and approved in writing by the Local
Planning Authority. The work shall include additional mitigating works to reduce conflict
between vehicular traffic and users of the bridleway Hol/154/50, together with details of any
construction works to the bridge. Thereafter the development shall be undertaken in
accordance with the approved details and be retained for the lifetime of the development.
Reason: The applicant has failed to demonstrate how the track will be made suitable for
residential traffic use and if the bridge is structurally sound to carry vehicular traffic and to
accord with policies T10 and BE1 of the Unitary Development Plan and the National
Planning Policy Framework.
So the works here should have been submitted and approved in advance by Kirklees and subsequently carried out in accordance with that approval. Surely the Council hasn’t approved this?