CAMPAIGNERS have vowed to fight plans for 150 new homes on a greenfield site.

Opponents of the scheme say it will pile massive strain on the community's already-overstretched infrastructure and strip the area of more countryside.

Persimmon Homes is proposing to build the houses on land at Bolton Road and Brown Bank Lane, Silsden.

Leaflets outlining the plans were sent to residents this week and public consultation has been launched, which will run until October 4.

A website has been set-up by the developer at, where people can view the proposals and provide feedback.

Craven ward district councillor Rebecca Whitaker said she felt "utter disbelief and dismay" when she learned of the planned scheme.

"Silsden has already taken more than its fair share of new homes and simply does not have the infrastructure for any more," said Cllr Whitaker, who is also a Silsden town councillor and deputy mayor.

"The town is marred by complete traffic chaos, with vehicles backed-up in both directions coming in and out of Silsden at peak times.

"It would be completely insane to think of adding-in a further 300-plus cars, via some newly-created junction. This would just further compound the highway nightmare and add to pollution levels."

Cllr Whitaker said the scheme would also deprive Silsden of valued greenfield land and lead to potential drainage problems.

"The fields behind the Banklands Avenue area tend to be very boggy at the best of times," she said. "This site is covered with natural springs. I am concerned that if housing is built, it will impact on flooding.

"Also, the new Silsden Primary School is shortly to open. We are told that it has been 'future-proofed' with scope for a four-form entry, but will this provide sufficient places for the many families with children that are moving into the town?"

Cllr Whitaker says she is contacting the agent Lichfields to press for a face-to-face consultation meeting in the town.

Meantime she is urging people to ensure they make their views known through the online consultation.

Her message is echoed by town mayor Cllr Mags Croft. Speaking as a resident, she said: "The town needs to say 'enough is enough'. People are giving their views on social media, but it's important that residents take part in the consultation and make their voices heard.

"On a personal level, I am devastated about this plan. I live just down the road from the site and have an allotment alongside it – I'm sure it won't be long before we lose the allotments too.

"The town's infrastructure won't be able to deal with any more housing."

Mark Wogden chairs the Silsden Campaign for the Countryside group, which was set-up in 2018 in response to proposals for an access road in the same greenfield area of the town. That plan was dropped following a public outcry.

He says part of the site proposed for the latest development is included as housing allocation in the new draft local plan for the district, which went to public consultation earlier this year. But he adds that more than half the site is not included in the draft plan and instead relies on "relatively unprotected" status in the existing Unitary Development Plan, a loophole which potentially could be exploited by the developer.

"If this principle is allowed to succeed it would be the thin end of a vary large wedge of possible further development," said Mr Wogden.

"It is time for us as a community, and for Bradford Council on our behalf, to treat such opportunistic development proposals with the contempt they deserve.

"We urge everyone who has received the 'consultation' leaflet to consider what is at stake. Please respond appropriately to the questions, but more importantly make your ward councillors and MP aware of how you feel."

Persimmon Homes says it is planning to build a range of two to five-bedroom houses, "alongside new areas of public open space".

It adds that 20 per cent of the properties will be affordable homes, available for discounted rent or purchase.

The company says that once consultation is complete, a detailed planning application will be submitted to Bradford Council.

A spokesperson said: "We would like to invite local people to share their comments on the proposals via the consultation website available at"