From Ilkley Gazette, April 26th, 2018
Written by Claire Lomax
RESIDENTS are campaigning to stop a 19th century "quirky, characterful property" in Ilkley from being demolished saying it should be preserved for generations to come. A planning application has been submitted to Bradford Council to demolish the three storey, detached, 9, Yew Croft, Westville Road, Ilkley and replace it with a new build house. While the house falls just outside of the town's conservation area many residents say this is an oversight and the building is an important part of Ilkley's heritage and should be retained.
The application, on behalf of Mr Timothy Holmes, of Addingham Moorside, states: "The building is tired in appearance with the tall ceilings, uninsulated walls and the inefficient floor plan makes the house unsuitable for refurbishment/improvement."
But the scheme has attracted opposition from dozens of local residents, including neighbour Jillian Postlethwaite, who disputes the claim the house is unfit for improvement. She said: "A lot of residents are very upset by the proposals. It is just so sad that they want to knock it down.
"Just to bulldoze it to the ground seems to be a crying shame. We should be conserving these buildings not knocking them down."
Jillian has been lobbying the support of her neighbours against the application which was submitted last month.
Chief among the objectors is Ilkley Civic Society who say they have a number of concerns regarding the proposal and do not believe the application justifies the demolition of "this quirky, characterful property".
They say: "The justification for demolition of being 'unsuited to refurbishment' is clearly not the case. In 2011 an application for an extension was granted so at that time it was thought 'suitable'."
They add: "We are also concerned regarding the heritage issues of what is a potential' heritage asset' being constructed, from map regression analysis, between 1847 and the 1890's and may be earlier. No attempt has been made to assess the heritage value of the property and it is surprising it was not included within the Conservation Area. Its demolition would certainly have a negative effect on the Conservation Area."
They add they are not against contemporary design but say the large area of solar panels on the plans for the new build may negatively affect neighbours.
"The above issues therefore result in our conclusion that we ask the council to refuse the application," they say.
Councillor Anne Hawkesworth (Ind, Ilkley) also opposes the application. She said: "I object to the demolition of 9 Yew Croft on the grounds of its status as a heritage asset to Ilkley.
"The "eco" design proposed is inappropriate to the setting and surrounding buildings and would produce an overbearing element in this area of the townscape."
Ilkley's MP John Grogan added: "A number of constituents have contacted me concerning this application. My view is the same as that of the Ilkley Civic Society. I therefore must object to this application."
The Ilkley Gazette contacted the agent for the application for comment but he was unavailable.
Representations can be still be submitted online via the online planning system or in writing to the Planning Service Britannia House, Hall Ings, Bradford, BD1 1HX, quoting the application number: 18/01286/FUL by the comments closing date of May 2, 2018.