Rothwell former coal board houses saved from demolition

image captionHomes were built in Oulton to help accommodate Rothwell colliery miners and their families

Plans to demolish 70 houses on a former coal board housing estate have been rejected.

Investment company Pemberstone wanted to build new homes on Sugar Hill Lane and Wordsworth Drive in Oulton, Rothwell, near Leeds.

The city council dismissed the application on the grounds it would harm the community.

The original homes were built to be used as short-term housing but have now stood for more than 50 years.

Residents, some of whom moved to the area to work at Rothwell colliery, said they were worried they would be priced out of the area if the plans went ahead.

The company said if planning consent was granted it would offer all those on standard tenancies the opportunity to extend their leases for two years, in order to find alternative accommodation, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

'Close-knit community'

The meeting also heard there was up to a three-year wait for a family rental home in the area.

"The major concern, I believe, is the breakup of a close-knit community. We have had to live with the threat of losing our homes for over two years, said campaigner and resident Cindy Readman.

"We choose to live here because the rents are affordable. Lots of us are on low incomes. We love these homes."

Pemberstone claimed the new homes, which included affordable properties, would be more energy efficient.

Speaking on behalf of the firm, a planning consultant told the committee the current homes were in a poor state of repair and would cost £58,000 each to renovate.

She added that it would not be possible for residents to remain in the properties while work was carried out.

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