Keighley residents to fight stone cutting plan

Laycock residents who are objecting to the plans, from the left, Peter Williams, Michael Birdsall, Peter Moon, Jim Walker and Eileen Walker

Laycock residents who are objecting to the plans, from the left, Peter Williams, Michael Birdsall, Peter Moon, Jim Walker and Eileen Walker

First published in Keighley by

Plans for a stone-cutting building at a quarry on the edge of Keighley are facing opposition.

Ashlar Stone Products Ltd, which operates Branshaw Quarry, in Holme House Lane, wants to develop a steel-framed, 480 square metre building on the site.

If it is granted permission, the shed will accommodate cutting and finishing work, to produce stone products for the building industry.

The applicant’s agent has argued that the stone extracted from Branshaw is much sought after, both locally and nationally, so it is important this material remains available.

The agent adds: “The proposed building will be situated in the bottom of the quarry, and not visible from the surrounding area.

“A recent noise assessment has demonstrated that the proposed operation will not increase existing background levels.”

However, opponents of the plans warn the building would generate substantial levels of noise and disturbance for residents in surrounding villages.

One Laycock resident has said: “When the quarry was operational for a short period in 2007 considerable noise was heard all round the village.

“The cutting of stone in a shed with room for several stone saws will be considerably worse. It will completely destroy the peace and the quality of life in a conservation village.”

Other objectors voiced their fears about the application at a public meeting in Laycock Village Hall earlier this month. Michael Birdsall, another Laycock resident, at the meeting, said: “As well as being concerned about noise from the stone cutting machines, people at were worried about the noise generated by 40 heavy goods vehicle movements a day that the new development would create.

“This evoked memories of the problems experienced by Fell Lane area residents in the 1980s, when the quarry was used to supply stone for the by-pass.”

Silkstone Environmental Ltd managing director Mark Barrett, the agent acting on behalf of Ashlar Stone Products, said: “The building would be very well visually screened.

“This is not a significant sized building, and it would be a low key operation, which would create jobs for the local economy.”

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