YORKSHIRE Water has dismissed claims by Keighley MP Robbie Moore that it has begun construction work at a waste treatment site "without planning permission".

Mr Moore said work is being carried out at the Oxenhope site without the required permissions and called the actions "unacceptable".

Yorkshire Water said it secured full permission for the £5.4 million project but some aspects were "incorrectly assessed" as being allowed, and it will submit an application retrospectively.

The project is aimed at reducing levels of phosphorus in treated wastewater that is returned to the environment.

Bradford Council said permission was granted in November 2020, but after receiving reports from residents of equipment not included in plans being installed, it visited the site.

Mr Moore visited the site himself to see the works, and has since written to Yorkshire Water calling for all work to be ceased until proper permission is secured.

He said: "Yorkshire Water have behaved completely unacceptably; they are acting like they are above the rules.

"The development is in a beautiful part of the Worth Valley – those who live near the site have every right to be furious that Yorkshire Water would undertake such a large construction project without the necessary permission and think they could get away with it.

"Bradford Council have advised Yorkshire Water to apply for retrospective planning, but this is only because neighbouring residents have expressed concern.

"No company is above the law. I expect Bradford Council to take a tough stance on this."

A spokesperson for Yorkshire Water said: “To install new equipment at the site, which is restricted in size, it was necessary to increase its footprint. Full permission was successfully sought, however, some elements of the project were incorrectly assessed as allowable.

“We were in communication with residents, Bradford Council and the local MP in December to outline the changes and following further consultation we’ve agreed to submit a retrospective application."

A Bradford Council spokesperson said: “We're working with Yorkshire Water to ensure this scheme is completed with as little disruption to residents as possible.

"Permission was granted in November 2020 for additional equipment to be installed. We received reports from residents some of the equipment installed was not included on the planning application, and following action Yorkshire Water has agreed to submit a retrospective application.

"Yorkshire Water is currently preparing this application and expecting to submit it over the next few weeks."