Ilkley Neighbourhood Development Plan (Regulation 16) July 2021

Ended on the 15 September 2021
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5. INDP Policies and proposals

5.1. This chapter of the Regulation 14 Draft INDP sets out the planning policies and proposals that will be used to help us achieve our 2030 Vision and objectives. Each policy is set out under the appropriate INDP objective. Several of the policies should be read alongside the accompanying Policies Map. Each of the planning policies will be used to help assess planning applications when development is proposed. So, for example, Policy INDP12 (Protecting Ilkley's Landscape Character) does not promote or propose development in areas of landscape character, it sets out the criteria that have been identified, at this stage, which should be used when someone puts in a planning application affecting these sensitive areas.

Objective 1 - Sustainable Residential Development

The INDP will support residential developments that are well related to the existing built environment and conserve the natural environment, are of high quality and move to zero carbon design

Policy INDP1: New Housing Development within Ilkley

Within the existing built-up area of Ilkley, i.e. land not currently within the Green Belt, new development for housing will be supported when it:

  1. Re-uses previously developed land and buildings;
  2. Would not lead to the loss of protected open or local green spaces;
  3. Would not lead to the loss of an identified community facility;
  4. Would not have a significant adverse impact on a listed building and/or Conservation Area or the setting of such an asset;
  5. Has been designed to meet the guidance contained in the design policies of this plan, the Core Strategy, and the Ilkley Design Statement; and
  6. Would not have an adverse effect upon the integrity of the South Pennine Moors Special Protection Area (SPA) or Special Area of Conservation (SAC) as set out in Bradford Core Strategy Policy SC8.

Housing density on most sites should be a minimum of 30 dwellings per hectare. Higher densities will be supported in the following locations:

  1. in the town centre;
  2. locations well served by public transport; and
  3. in areas where the local built character is more suitable for higher density development.

Should Green Belt sites be released these should be developed in such a way as to optimise the density of development in line with policy in chapter 11 of the NPPF.

All housing sites of 10 units or more should have a suitable mix of house types, sizes and tenures so that they contribute to sustaining a healthy, balanced community when assessed against policies in the Core Strategy and the following:

  1. This mix should include dwellings suitable for starter homes and dwellings that would create downsizing opportunities. Development heavily favouring houses of one size or type will not be supported; or
  2. On sites of less than 10 dwellings the proposed mix should contribute to a healthy and balanced community when assessed in relation to the range of housing found within the immediate local neighbourhood of the site.
  3. Support will be given to community land trusts, self-build, custom and co-housing.


5.2. The single biggest issue for the future development of Ilkley, and the main area of concern raised by residents, both in the Questionnaire Survey, and through responses to the CBMDC Core Strategy consultations, was the impact of the Core Strategy's proposed housing growth on Ilkley; in particular the impact of this planned growth on Ilkley's setting and surrounding Green Belt, much of which is also a valued landscape and protected wildlife area. The protection of such important features have to be balanced with the benefits new housing can bring[1] in terms of meeting local needs, particularly affordable housing, and in supporting local services and facilities.

5.3. The Core Strategy growth target will see Ilkley, as a Principal Town, grow by 1,000 new homes by 2030 – an increase of almost 15% more homes, 2011-2030; or 2,300 more people based on average household size in 2011. The Core Strategy is currently at an early stage of a Partial Review. These figures may change as a result of that review.

5.4. Whilst there are opportunities for infill development within the town that may not necessarily lead to a detrimental impact on the town's character, meeting the growth target may necessitate significant release of Green Belt land (Figure 4 shows the current Green Belt boundary). The INDP seeks to promote efficient use of land by supporting appropriate densities: such effective use of land could reduce the need to release Green Belt land in the Bradford Allocations DPD.

5.5. In conjunction with other development plan policies and other policies in the INDP new housing should be of good design and have regard to the Ilkley Design Statement and CBMDC's supplementary planning document - Homes and Neighbourhoods - A Guide to Designing in Bradford and the National Design Guide (MHCLG, Oct 2019).

5.6. The revision of Green Belt boundaries, however, is not a matter for neighbourhood development plans unless the strategic policies in the area allow for this. Currently, this is not the case in terms of Core Strategy policy; this may change when the Partial Review of the Core Strategy is complete. Should Green Belt land need to be released it should be developed in such a way as to minimise Green Belt land release by optimising the density of development in line with the policies set out in chapter 11 of the NPPF.

5.7. Given this, the INDP's planning policy for future housing development covers only the existing built-up area of the Ilkley as, the INDP cannot consider surrounding sites in the Green Belt (Figure 4). Within this built-up area, whilst the Core Strategy acknowledges there are opportunities for infill development there are significant economic, social and environmental assets that need to be conserved and protected if Ilkley's valued quality of life is to be maintained. To ensure this is the case Policy INDP1 has been prepared to help manage future housing growth within the existing built-up area of the town.

5.8. Bradford Core Strategy Policy SC8 "Protecting the South Pennine Moors SPA and the South Pennine Moors SAC and their zone of influence". states that:

"In Zone A no development involving a net increase in dwellings would be permitted unless, as an exception, the development and/or its use would not have an adverse effect upon the integrity of the SPA or SAC."

Zone A extends 400m from the boundary of the SPA/SAC and so includes substantial areas of south Ilkley which border with Ilkley Moor, from Panorama Drive area in the west to Ben Rhydding in the east - including garden areas which are included in development proposals submitted to Bradford Council on a regular basis. To ensure that such inpacts are properly assessed criterion (f) of Policy INDP1 will be applied. Within the zones of influence and elsewhere one of the most significant biodiversity features of the neighbourhood area is the high concentration of ground nesting birds on open farmland and other green space. Many of these species are becoming increasingly rare, such as lapwing, golden plover, oyster catcher, curlew, skylark and meadow pipit. Where such land is functionally linked to the SPA/SAC any proposed development will be assessed for its impact against CBMDC Core Strategy Policy SC8. Many of these bird assemblages are also important in their own right and protected under different policy and legislation.


Objective 2 – Services and Facilities

The INDP will create an attractive and usable public realm, retain existing services and support the establishment of new accessible local services and community enterprises, which meet the needs of the whole community and visitors.

Policy INDP2: Protecting and Enhancing Community Facilities

Existing Facilities

There will be a presumption in favour of the protection of existing community facilities. Where planning permission is required, the change of use of existing community facilities, as listed below, will only be supported for other health, education or community type uses (such as community halls, local clubhouses, health centres, schools, public houses and children's day nurseries). When a non-community use (e.g. housing) is proposed to replace, either by conversion or re-development, one of the facilities listed below such development will only be supported when one of the following can be demonstrated:

  1. The proposal includes alternative provision, on a site within the locality, of equivalent or enhanced facilities. Such sites should be accessible by public transport, walking and cycling and have adequate cycle and car parking.; or
  2. Where facilities are considered to be no longer needed or suitable for continued community facility use, satisfactory evidence is put forward by the applicant that, over a minimum period of 12 months, it has been demonstrated, through active marketing of the site, that there is no longer a need or demand for the facility.

The facilities to be protected are listed as follows and shown on the Policies Map.

  • INDP2/1 – All Saints Church, link building and Church House, Church Street
  • INDP2/2 - Ben Rhydding Methodist Church and Halls, Ben Rhydding Drive
  • INDP2/3 - Christchurch, and associated halls and coffee centre, The Grove
  • INDP2/4 - St John's Church and halls, Bolling Road, Ben Rhydding
  • INDP2/5 - St Margaret's Church and halls, Queens Road
  • INDP2/6 - Friends Meeting House (Quakers), Queens Road
  • INDP2/7 - Ilkley Baptist Church, Kings Road
  • INDP2/8 - Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Stockeld Road
  • INDP2/9 -The Briery Retreat and Conference Centre, Victoria Avenue
  • INDP2/10 - Jehovah's Witness Hall, Nelson Road
  • INDP2/11 - The Town Hall and Library
  • INDP2/12 - Kings Hall & Winter Garden
  • INDP2/13 - Ilkley Manor House, Church Street
  • INDP2/14 - Ilkley Playhouse, Weston Road
  • INDP2/15 - Ilkley Cinema, Leeds Road
  • INDP2/16 - Upstagers Theatre Group, Station Road
  • INDP2/17 - Operatic House, Leeds Road
  • INDP2/18 - Ilkley Health Centre, Springs Lane
  • INDP2/19 - The Coronation Hospital
  • INDP2/20 – The Warehouse (Children's Centre/ Ilkley Youth & Community
  • Association), Little Lane
  • INDP2/21 - Ben Rhydding Preschool Playgroup, Bolling Road
  • INDP2/22 - Clarke Foley Centre, Cunliffe Road
  • INDP2/23 - Abbeyfield Centre, Riddings Road
  • INDP2/24 - Outside the Box, Bridge Lane
  • INDP2/25 – White Wells complex, Ilkley Moor
  • INDP2/26 - Hollygarth Club Hall, Leeds Road
  • INDP2/27 - Nell Bank Centre, Denton Road
  • INDP2/28 – Riding Centre, Denton Road
  • INDP2/29 - Air Training Corps Halls, Ashlands Road
  • INDP2/30 - Ben Rhydding Scout & Guide Group halls, Wheatley Lane, Ben
  • Rhydding
  • INDP2/31 - Scout Hall, Beanlands Parade
  • INDP2/32 - Curly Hill Scout Centre and Campsite, Curly Hill
  • INDP2/33 – Cow and Calf Kiosk and toilets
  • INDP2/34 – Ilkley Masonic Hall, Cunliffe Road
  • INDP2/35 – Ilkley Constitutional Club, South Hawksworth Street
  • INDP2/36 - Ben Rhydding Snooker Club, Wheatley Lane
  • INDP2/37 - Ilkley Moor Vaults, Stockeld Road
  • INDP2/38 - Cow and Calf Hotel, Hangingstone Road
  • INDP2/39 - Craiglands Hotel, Cowpasture Road
  • INDP2/40 - The Wheatley Hotel, Wheatley Lane
  • INDP2/41 - Bar T'at, Cunliffe Road
  • INDP2/42 - Flying Duck, Church Street
  • INDP2/43 - The Riverside, Bridge Lane
  • INDP2/44 - The Yard, Brook Street Yard
  • INDP2/45 – The Lister Arms, South Hawksworth Street
  • INDP2/46 – The Black Hat, Church Street
  • INDP2/47 – The Dalesway Hotel, Leeds Road
  • INDP2/48 – The Crescent Inn, Brook Street
  • INDP2/49 – The Station Hotel, Station Road
  • INDP2/50 – The Midland Hotel, Station Road
  • INDP2/51 – Public toilets – Riverside Gardens
  • INDP2/52 – Public toilets - Central car park

New Facilities

Where new community facilities are proposed they should be in accessible locations for those seeking or needing to access the sites by walking, cycling and integrated public transport, include adequate cycle parking and off-street car parking to CBMDC standards and be of good quality design


5.9. Ilkley is identified in the CBMDC Core Strategy as a Principal Town. This is in recognition of the role the town performs within the Wharfe Valley and wider area as a hub for the local economy, housing, community and social infrastructure, and tourism.

5.10. The INDP will support the aim of protecting and enhancing Ilkley's role as a Principal Town so that existing services and facilities are retained, and the establishment of new facilities are supported in sustainable and accessible locations so that they can meet the needs of the whole community and visitors.

5.11. The services and facilities in Ilkley are key elements that contribute to the town's valued quality of life. They perform the social role of sustainable development identified in national planning policy. They provide accessible local services that meet the community's needs and support health, social and cultural well-being. The INDP also supports the policy in chapter 8 of the NPPF that seeks to achieve healthy, inclusive and safe places.

5.12. To ensure that quality of life is maintained, and, where possible, enhanced. The INDP identifies and seeks to protect key community facilities: being a land use plan the INDP can protect buildings and land, which it will seek to do, but not the services run from those buildings. The running of services is not a land use planning matter.

Policy INDP3: Protecting and Enhancing Recreation Facilities

Recreation Facilities

There will be a presumption in favour of the protection of the existing recreation facilities listed below and identified on the Policies Map. This includes children's play areas listed under Policy INDP10.

  • INDP3/1 - Ben Rhydding Sports Complex
  • INDP3/2 - Clevedon House, Ben Rhydding Drive (swimming pool)
  • INDP3/3 – Ilkley Lawn Tennis and Squash Club (including gym)
  • INDP3/4 - Ilkley Bowls Club and hall
  • INDP3/5 - Ilkley Cricket Club and pavilion
  • INDP3/6 – Ilkley Lido Complex
  • INDP3/7 - Ilkley Rugby Union Football Club
  • INDP3/8 - Olicana Cricket Club
  • INDP3/9 - West Holmes playing field and pavilion
  • INDP3/10 – Ilkley Golf Club (the part in the neighbourhood area)
  • INDP3/11 – Ben Rhydding Golf Club
  • INDP3/12 – Ilkley Riding Centre, Leeds Road

Proposals leading to the loss of these recreation facilities will not be supported unless:

  1. The applicant has undertaken an assessment which clearly shows the identified facility is surplus to requirements; or
  2. The loss resulting from the proposed development would be replaced by equivalent or better provision in terms of quantity and quality in a location accessible to existing users, including residents of the neighbourhood area; or
  3. The development is for alternative sports and recreation provision, the benefits of which for the neighbourhood area clearly outweigh the loss of the existing identified facility


5.13 As well as being a hub for services and community facilities, Ilkley also performs a similar role when it comes to recreation facilities, such as parks and sports facilities. There are many recreation facilities within the town including sports clubs (including one of the largest cycling clubs in the country), voluntary groups, the U3A, and local walking groups, all of which use recreation facilities which need to be retained. As with community facilities these recreation facilities make an important contribution to the health and well-being of the town. The INDP will, therefore, seek to protect the town's key recreation resources.

Policy INDP4: Allotments and Community Gardens

Existing allotments and community gardens will be protected in the following locations and are shown on the Policies Map.

  • INDP4/1 - Bridge Lane
  • INDP4/2 - Castle Road
  • INDP4/3 - Leeds Road/River Wharfe
  • INDP4/4 – St John's Community Garden

The redevelopment of allotment provision will only be supported when:

  1. Replacement provision is provided, of at least equivalent quality, and in a location accessible for existing and future plot holders; or
  2. In order to provide a better geographic spread of allotments within the neighbourhood area, and improve local people's access to such facilities more land for new allotments will be identified in Ilkley and Ben Rhydding as to its suitability, for example the land on Wheatley Lane next to the Ben Rhydding Scout and Guide Group halls.

Existing community orchards will be protected in the following locations and are shown on the Policies Map.

  • INDP4/5 – Wheatley Lane Recreation Ground, Ben Rhydding
  • INDP4/6 – East Holmes Field, Ilkley

New allotment provision will be supported, including in the Green Belt (as long as they preserve the openness of the Green Belt and do not conflict with the purposes of the Green Belt), and when the proposal is in reasonable walking distance of residential areas and schools, and such proposals would not have a significant detrimental impact on residential amenity, the setting of a Conservation Area, or the local landscape.

In order to provide a better geographic spread of allotments, within the neighbourhood area, land for new allotments will be identified and explored as to its suitability, such as the land on Wheatley Lane next to the Ben Rhydding Scout and Guide Group halls.


5.13. Ilkley Town Council is required to provide a sufficient number of allotments for Ilkley's residents. Ilkley has four existing Town Council run allotments, these provide 160 plots. Ilkley has 7,052 households therefore the recommended minimum number of allotments is 106 (1996 National Allotment survey). However there continues to be a huge demand in Ilkley for allotments with all plots being let. Some have been divided into half and quarter plots to accommodate differing family needs, but the waiting list is still 95 and growing monthly. This means the waiting time for an allotment is long and unless additional allotments are provided, people may expect to wait for over seven years. Future needs are expected to increase. The INDP will protect existing allotment sites for local food growing, recreation and the health and social benefits they provide.

5.14. Policy INDP14 will encourage the provision of new allotments. Potential sites will be considered in Ilkley and Ben Rhydding. Allotments in these locations will help improve the geographic spread of allotments and improve local people's access to such facilities. This policy also supports the Community Orchard and will support the provision of more sites for community food growing across Ilkley and Ben Rhydding.


Objective 3 – Cultural Landscape

The INDP will seek to conserve and enhance the built landscape, particularly the Conservation Areas of Ilkley, Ben Rhydding and Middleton. Likewise, the natural landscape of Ilkley Moor, the green spaces which perforate the Town, the Becks and River Wharfe and the existing Green Belt which surrounds it; will all be protected to the maximum possible extent.

The INDP will seek to maximise improvements to energy efficiency and support the development of community and privately-led decentralised renewable and low carbon sources of energy

Policy INDP5: Encouraging High Quality and Zero Carbon Design

Responding to the Ilkley Local Context

New development should demonstrate a positive and engaging approach to design. Schemes should aim to enhance local visual interest and make a harmonious, positive, attractive contribution to the local street scene.

Specifically designs should incorporate the following principles:

  1. Schemes should be of a scale, mass and built form which respond to and reinforce the characteristics of the site and local context. Proposals for new housing should not feature generic schemes, but demonstrate how they take account of and incorporate the best built and natural environmental features identified within the character of the area in which they are to be sited;
  2. Care should be taken to ensure that building(s) height, scale, and form, including the roofline and roof and tile material and colour, do not disrupt the visual amenities of the street scene and impact on any significant wider landscape views. Due to the topography and layout of many streets in llkley, rear elevations are often more visible to the public and therefore rear extensions and rear dormers need to be of a standard deemed appropriate to that for a front elevation;
  3. New buildings should follow a consistent design approach to the use of materials, fenestration, the roofline and roof and tile material and colour when assessed in relation to other buildings on the site and adjoining buildings surrounding the site;
  4. Materials should be chosen to complement the design of a development and add to the quality or character of the surrounding environment. Locally appropriate materials should be used such as Yorkshire Gritstone, traditional local brick, light coloured render and slate or stone slates for roofs;
  5. Innovative contemporary design that can be demonstrated by the applicant to be of a high design quality that responds to local character and context will be supported when it enriches the town's architectural heritage;
  6. Where planning permission is required, extensions should be small in scale and subordinate to the original building;
  7. Proposals should minimise the impact on existing and future amenity of residents and businesses and give careful consideration to noise, odour and light emissions. Light pollution should be minimised, wherever possible, and street and security lighting designed to be unobtrusive and energy efficient;
  8. Proposals that have an interface between the built-up area of Ilkley town and the existing Green Belt, or proposals that would create a new interface between the built area and Green Belt, should include measures (such as, but not limited to, landscaping, screening, appropriate building height) that minimise the visual impact of the development when viewed from the Green Belt; and
  9. In the wider rural area, redevelopment, alteration or extension of farm and agricultural buildings should be sensitive to the distinctive character, materials and form of Mid-Wharfedale.
  10. Street trees help reduce traffic speed, provide shade and shelter and absorb pollution and will be protected and promoted. Consideration must be given to retaining street trees within development proposals including those with Tree Protection Orders (TPOs). Where the removal of street trees is unavoidable (for example due to disease) they should be replaced with a tree of appropriate variety. Street trees will be promoted in new developments.

Sustainable Design

  1. Applicants will be required to demonstrate, ideally through the provision of a proportionate sustainability statement, how the design (e.g. siting and orientation to optimise passive solar gain), energy efficiency measures and renewable and low carbon energy generation incorporated into such development supports the transition to a zero carbon future. All new developments must generate a minimum of 10% of their regulated energy use on-site from renewable and low carbon sources (The "Merton Rule").
  2. Any hard surfaces should be permeable, allowing surface water to soak away and incorporate the principles of sustainable drainage systems (SUDS).
  3. Good thermal performance of buildings, including use of thermally efficient building materials, is encouraged to help reduce fuel poverty, and ensure that local residents are able to live in warm, healthy homes which they can afford to heat.
  4. The INDP supports the retro-fitting of historic buildings to improve their energy efficiency, whilst ensuring their heritage significance is protected. Where appropriate, new housing should be capable of being adapted to meet the changing needs of occupants over time.
  5. New commercial development should aim to meet as a minimum the relevant design category of Buildings Research Establishment BREEAM building standard 'excellent'.
  6. Developments should demonstrate how they have been designed to mitigate and adapt to climate change and natural hazards including flooding from increased rainfall as well as minimising overheating and reliance on air conditioning systems.
  7. All developments should be designed taking into account best practice in water efficiency, such as water efficient fittings and appliances, water harvesting and storage features, and green roofs.
  8. Hard surfaces, such as driveways, should be permeable, allowing surface water to soak away. New developments must incorporate sustainable drainage systems to reduce the runoff of surface water. Where the feature is communal rather than building specific this should be designed as an integral part of the green infrastructure and street network, so that sustainable drainage systems are positive features of the development. Such systems should effectively mitigate any adverse effects from surface water run-off and flooding on people, property and the ecological value of the local environment.
  9. Development should include landscaping and planting of native species of local provenance, including species that encourage pollinators.

Renewable Energy

The INDP supports proposals for individual and community scale renewable and low carbon energy generation that is 'community-led' or 'meets the needs' of the local community. This includes from solar photovoltaic panels and proposals for standalone renewable energy developments subject to the following criteria:

  • the siting and scale of the proposed development is appropriate to its setting and position in the wider landscape; and
  • the proposed development does not create an unacceptable impact on the amenities of local residents; and
  • the proposed development does not have an unacceptable impact on a feature of natural or biodiversity importance.


5.15. The neighbourhood area is fortunate to have a wealth of built heritage and landscape assets. This "cultural landscape" contributes to the sense of place of the different neighbourhoods and areas, and helps to define Ilkley's physical identity. The town's rich mix of historic buildings, use of traditional and more modern materials, architectural details, and spaces between buildings, set within an upland moor landscape, all contribute to the unique character which makes Ilkley attractive to residents, businesses and visitors alike.

5.16. The response to the "We need to talk about Ilkley" questionnaire survey was overwhelmingly positive about the physical environment of Ilkley. The comments in response to Question 1 "What do you like about Ilkley?" included numerous references to the town's "pleasant environment", "the beautiful town", "the character of the town", "buildings" and "overall attractiveness". Similarly, there were many positive responses about the "surrounding countryside" and its "good accessibility".

5.17. The INDP has an important role to play in ensuring that this local character is conserved and, by encouraging new development to respond sensitively to its setting, should help to ensure that new buildings and alterations make a positive contribution to Ilkley's future architectural richness and diversity.

5.18. Ilkley will continue to face development pressures over the Plan period (up to 2030) and the INDP has a role to play in encouraging high quality design in new development throughout the town and wider area. INDP policies should aim to ensure change is accommodated sensitively and successfully, so that new buildings are properly integrated into the existing structure and fabric of the town.

5.19. Development should contribute positively to the visual interest and variety of styles in the town, and in so doing help to ensure that Ilkley continues to be an attractive and interesting place in the future.

5.20. Designs (including contemporary designs) should their take cues from the local character, distinctiveness and sense of place of areas within Ilkley. New housing and commercial development should be ambitious in providing high quality, bespoke designs which respond to Ilkley as a traditional Dales town with a lively sense of local community, adding value to the local townscape.

5.21. Retrofitting a traditional property requires different solutions to that of a modern cavity walled property. CBMDC has produced the 'Sustainable Design Guide: Increasing the lifetime value of new development and refurbishment (2006)'; supplementary planning document to assist with this. Retrofitting national guidance has now been incorporated into a BSI document PAS203S 'Retrofitting dwellings for improved energy efficiency' (June 2019).

5.22. In addition, modern architectural approaches can, increasingly, provide more sustainable solutions which reduce the carbon footprint of buildings and minimise consumption of energy, water and materials. Energy efficiency also contributes towards affordable warmth priorities and can play a role in reducing fuel poverty.

5.23. Applicants proposing additional new dwellings should ensure that such proposals do not have an adverse effect upon the integrity of the South Pennine Moors Special Protection Area (SPA) or Special Area of Conservation (SAC) as set out in Bradford Core Strategy Policy SC8.

5.24. Moving towards a zero carbon economy and adapting to the challenges of climate change are central issues for the INDP. Policy INDP5 seeks to encourage applicants for new housing development to move beyond prevailing standards to secure zero carbon development.

Policy INDP6: General Principles for New Development in Conservation Areas in Ilkley

Proposals for new development and alterations to existing buildings in or adjacent to, and impacting on the setting of the three Conservation Areas of Ben Rhydding, Ilkley and Middleton will be required to protect key views and demonstrate careful consideration of any potential impacts on the setting of the relevant conservation area, and other nearby heritage assets above or underground, and to put in place measures to avoid or minimise impact or mitigate damage.

Proposals will be required to describe the significance of any heritage assets affected, including any contribution made by their setting. Development proposals should protect, conserve, and where possible, enhance heritage assets and their settings in a manner appropriate to their significance.

Overall, development should reflect the scale, mass, height and form of existing locally characteristic buildings, and design details and materials should be chosen to be harmonious with neighbouring properties.



5.25. There are three conservation areas in Ilkley: Ben Rhydding, Ilkley and Middleton. It is important that new development in the Conservation Areas is designed sensitively to ensure the special characteristics of each area are conserved and enhanced.

5.26. Applicants proposing additional new dwellings within the Conservation Areasshould also ensure that such proposals do not have an adverse effect upon the integrity of the South Pennine Moors Special Protection Area (SPA) or Special Area of Conservation (SAC) as set out in Bradford Core Strategy Policy SC8.

5.27. Each of the conservation areas has a conservation area assessment and conservation area appraisal, prepared and published by CBMDC. All CBMDC Conservation Area Appraisals should by updated every 5 years. These provide important information about the individual characteristics that help to make each conservation area special, including the scale, design and materials of buildings; location of listed buildings and key unlisted buildings; important trees; and key open spaces and views. The assessments also include guidance for new development.

5.28. As well as the general criteria in Policy INDP6 for the Conservation Areas theINDP also has separate policies for the neighbourhood's three Conservation Areas (Policies INDP7, 8 and 9).

Policy INDP7: New Development in Ben Rhydding Conservation Area

New development in Ben Rhydding Conservation Area should be designed sensitively to ensure the special characteristics of the area are preserved and enhanced.

Traditional materials are encouraged such as stone, render, timber and brick for elevations, stone or blue slate and red clay tiles for roofing materials, timber for windows, doors and shop fronts, and cast iron for railings and gates. Stone walls or hedgerows should be used for boundary treatments.

Existing original shopfronts should be retained and repaired and replacement shopfronts should follow the guidelines for the town centre and shopfront policy in the INDP and other guidance such as the CBMDC 'Shopfront Design Guide' Supplementary Planning Document.

Development should connect with existing pathways and alleyways to encourage walking and cycling and support permeable, accessible movement within the area.

Long distance views out of the conservation area to the fields to the north and Ilkley Moor to the south should be protected.

Contemporary and sustainable designs will be acceptable where they are of exceptional design and/or sustainable construction and where it can be clearly demonstrated that they are appropriate to their context.



5.29. The extent of Ben Rhydding Conservation Area is shown on the Policies Map.

5.30. The Ben Rhydding Conservation Area Appraisal, 2006 sets out that the Ben Rhydding Conservation Area covering the historic core of the settlement and retaining elements from its history and development. In the 17th century the rural village of Wheatley consisted of around a dozen buildings, mainly farmsteads and cottages. In the 19th century the Ben Rhydding Hydro was developed as a spa and the village changed its name to Ben Rhydding. Expansion continued into the late 19th century. The core of the conservation area, including shops on Bolling Road and buildings on Margerison Road and Wheatley Avenue was built by 1909.

5.31. A summary of important features and details identifies the following:

  • Natural stone – elevations and roofing materials;
  • Traditional timber window frames, doors and guttering;
  • Traditional shop fronts;
  • Cast iron rainwater goods;
  • Stone boundary walls to properties away from Bolling Road;
  • Mixture of building types and architectural styles;
  • Snickets and historic street pattern, particularly the width and orientation of Bolling Road.

CBMDC 'Shopfront Design Guide' Supplementary Planning Document guidance should be followed in relation to shopfronts.

5.32. The INDP should promote and encourage new development to be sympathetic to the conservation area. Policy INDP7 takes forward design guidance from the Conservation Area Assessment and will be used to ensure that new development in this area is designed appropriately.

Policy INDP8: New Development in Ilkley Conservation Area

New development in Ilkley Conservation Area should be designed sensitively to ensure the area's special characteristics are preserved and enhanced.

The Roman Core and Shopping Centre

Any development within these sectors should be of high quality, retaining or restoring traditional features and open spaces, to enhance the setting of heritage assets including the Roman Fort and historic centre.

For commercial properties, original shopfront details should be reinstated, or restored where surviving. New shop fronts should be designed in accordance with the principles set out in the Conservation Area Appraisal, using traditional details, materials and appropriate colours and in accordance with policy in this plan.

The Railway Town

Existing original shopfronts to the Leeds Road frontages should be retained and repaired and replacement shopfronts should follow the guidelines for the town centre and shopfront policy in the INDP and other guidance.

New development should demonstrate rhythm and consistency with a regular pattern of doors and windows. The removal of chimney stacks on existing terraced properties will be resisted. Dormer windows should follow a consistent design approach.

Spa Town

Identified key buildings, especially the landmark former Spa buildings and their grounds, mature trees both in grounds and in the public realm, and the views out across the town and over to the moors should be retained and enhanced.

The interlinking open spaces which provide a mature landscaped setting for the main buildings and a green thread running through the fabric of the Conservation Area are of paramount importance and should be protected.

Victorian and Edwardian Suburbs and Residential Expansion

Sensitive restoration of older properties of character is encouraged. Extensions, dormer windows and other alterations to dwellings should be designed to retain the essential character of the Victorian and Edwardian style of architecture.

Designs for new buildings and extensions should take their architectural cues from the local context and where possible use appropriate local materials such as clay red roof tiles, gritstone and timbering.

There will be a presumption against infilling of visually important gaps in the Conservation Area which provide a green break between terraced areas, and the mature gardens should be protected from inappropriate backland development. Loss of trees and boundary walls will be resisted.

N.B. the character areas referred to in the policy are those identified in the Conservation Area Appraisal.


5.33. The extent of Ilkley Conservation Area is shown on the Policies Map.

5.34. The Ilkley Conservation Area covers the historic core of the settlement which retains elements from various stages in its history and development. Following the abandonment of the Roman Fort and settlement of Olicana, Ilkley developed as a medieval village, in the 14th Century the Manor House was built, one of the oldest surviving buildings in Ilkley. The settlement was centred on Church Street and Brook Street, and by the 16th century there were several well populated farmsteads nearby. In the 18th century the settlement was centred primarily upon agriculture with some textiles and quarrying works. The development of the spa industries led to a new wave of growth. The success of hydropathy saw many new and imposing buildings in and around Ilkley.

5.35. Important features and details which contribute to the essential character of the Conservation Area include the following:

  • Unique mix of building types and architectural styles throughout the Conservation Area;
  • A variety of massing, height and scales of development;
  • Natural coursed Gritstone - elevations;
  • A variety of roof materials - stone slates (on earlier properties around the central areas); Welsh/blue slate or red terracotta tiles
  • (on later properties);
  • Traditional timber window frames (either sash or side hung casements), painted timber four panelled doors and guttering;
  • Corniced chimney stacks;
  • Unpainted stonework;
  • Traditional timber shop fronts with stone carved details and recessed doorways;
  • Stone boundary walls on residential properties.

5.36. Design principles from the Conservation Area Appraisal have been brought forward into Policy INDP8.

Policy INDP9: New Development in Middleton Conservation Area

New development in Middleton Conservation Area should be designed sensitively to ensure the area's special characteristics are preserved and enhanced. Special attention should be paid to the preservation of the low density of built form, the inter-related relationship of buildings to large plot sizes, and the preponderance of mature landscaping and tree cover.

The significant views and vistas into, out of and through the conservation area should be respected.

New development that will impact on the setting of the Conservation Area, for example being either immediately within the vicinity of, or clearly visible from within its confines, should respond to the principles of good design set out for new build as set out in Policies INDP5 and INDP6 of this plan. New development within the Conservation Area should reflect the predominant building form of the character of the area in which it is situated. This relates to height, scale and siting. It should not over dominate the existing fabric.

Any new development should make use of high quality materials that complement the traditional materials used in the area. Development should sit harmoniously within the existing built fabric and should respect the uniformity of colour and texture of the built form of the Conservation Area.

Existing boundary treatments should be retained or enhanced. New boundary treatments should be in keeping with those in the immediate and wider Conservation Area. Particular attention should be paid to retaining vegetation and fencing to preserve the informal nature of domestic boundaries.

The street layout of the Conservation Area is important to its character and historic interest. Therefore, the width, direction and orientation of roads and paths through the area should be conserved.

There should be a presumption against building in open areas that have been identified as contributing to the character of the conservation area and development should respect important areas of green space and woodland.



5.37. The extent of Middleton Conservation Area is shown on the Policies Map.

5.38. Before the 19th century the area covered by the Middleton Conservation Area was part of the Middleton Estate. All of the Conservation Area was once covered by woodland which was used by the Middleton family and their guests for hunting, fishing and recreation. The Grade II* listed Low Hall was built in the 17th century and is one of the oldest intact houses in this part of Wharfedale.

5.39. Prior to 1899 Low Hall was the only building within the Conservation Area. Middleton had avoided industrialisation, urbanisation and mining in a time when many parts of Yorkshire, including neighbouring Ilkley, experienced rapid and considerable expansion. The sale of the area to the Wharfedale Estate Company in 1899, and the Middleton covenants, led to the master planning of the area as an exclusive, leafy housing estate for middle-class commuters, with large houses set in generous plots along broad avenues. The estates road plan and its character are still evident today and Middleton Conservation Area incorporates all the dwellings built by the Wharfedale Estate Company. Open spaces and facilities such as the Lido, sports grounds and street furniture, which were designed as part of, and are contemporary with, the early twentieth century housing estate, have survived and are still in use today.

5.40. The following provides a summary of the key characteristics of Middleton Conservation Area:

  • Large houses, wide roads, generous landscaped gardens and mature trees and hedgerows that create a spacious, leafy and salubrious suburban character.
  • A range of building styles and ages, including the 17th century manor house Low Hall, early 20th century Arts and Crafts and Vernacular
  • Revival houses, limited but good examples of 1930s modernist architecture, and more recent dwellings of varying quality built between the 1960s and the present-day.
  • A mixture of natural and man-made building materials which reflect the age and architectural styles of different buildings within the Conservation Area.
  • Predominantly residential but with large areas of open space and sports and recreational facilities along the banks of the Wharfe.
  • Middleton Woods to the north and the river to the south, provide a high-quality setting.

5.41. Design principles from the Conservation Area Assessment have been brought forward into Policy INDP9. As well as planning policy, existing covenants in Middleton may restrict development.

Policy INDP10: Local Green Spaces

Development of the following designated Local Green Spaces will only be permitted when consistent with national planning policy for Green Belts. The Local Green Spaces to be protected are listed below and shown on the Policies Map.

  • INDP10/1 – Memorial Gardens and Playground, Riverside
  • INDP10/2 – East Holmes Field and Skateboard Park
  • INDP10/3 - West Holmes Field
  • INDP10/4 – Abbeyfield grounds and Bandstand
  • INDP10/5 – Canker Well, The Grove
  • INDP10/6 – Sensory Garden, Parish Ghyll Road
  • INDP10/7 – All Saints Church land and Manor House land Green Spaces INDP10/8 – Wheatley Lane Recreation Ground
  • INDP10/9 – St Margaret's Terrace Woodland and Panorama Stones
  • INDP10/10 – Darwin Gardens Millennium Green
  • INDP10/11 – Spence Gardens, including the War Memorial Gardens
  • INDP10/12 – Backstone Way Playground
  • INDP10/13 – Backstone Way Open Space
  • INDP10/14 – Wheatley Lane Garden
  • INDP10/15 – Woodland Trust River Bank
  • INDP10/16 – Ashlands Field
  • INDP10/17 - Ben Rhydding School Field
  • INDP10/18 – Beanlands Parade Open Space
  • INDP10/19 - Ilkley Cemetery and woodland Green Space


5.42. The built-up area is enhanced by a number of important open spaces, these range from small, informal areas to large, formal open spaces, some are valued for their recreational value others for their beauty and biodiversity.

5.43. NDPs can identify and designate areas of Local Green Space. Such spaces are of particular local significance and when designated would be protected from new development in the same way as Green Belt. The INDP has to set out clearly the justification for such areas in order to protect them as Local Green Spaces, and the key factors in making such a justification is set out in the NPPF:

"99. The designation of land as Local Green Space through local and neighbourhood plans allows communities to identify and protect green areas of particular importance to them. Designating land as Local Green Space should be consistent with the local planning of sustainable development and complement investment in sufficient homes, jobs and other essential services. Local Green Spaces should only be designated when a plan is prepared or updated, and be capable of enduring beyond the end of the plan period.

100. The Local Green Space designation should only be used where the green space is:

a) in reasonably close proximity to the community it serves;

b) demonstrably special to a local community and holds a particular local significance, for example because of its beauty, historic significance, recreational value (including as a playing field), tranquillity or richness of its wildlife; and

c) local in character and is not an extensive tract of land.

101. Policies for managing development within a Local Green Space should be consistent with those for Green Belts."

5.44. At the Preferred Option consultation stage of the INDP 39 spaces were put forward for possible Local Green Space designation. Using information from this consultation and an assessment of each of the spaces against the criteria in national planning policy, the 17 spaces identified in Policy INDP10 are to be designated as Local Green Spaces. The full Local Green Space assessment is available as an accompanying evidence base document to the INDP.

Policy INDP11: Green Corridors

The Green Corridors as shown on the Policies Map will be protected as important local landscape features which perform multi-functional roles as part of Ilkley's Green Infrastructure network. The Bradford Wildlife Habitat Network will be augmented by a Local Wildlife Habitat Network which will be created, consulted on and added to the Ilkley Neighbourhood Development Plan.

Proposals for development on or adjacent to green corridors must maintain and if possible enhance the function of the corridor. Planning applications must clearly demonstrate how they have incorporated appropriate measures to secure the connectivity of the corridor and the freedom of movement for species on and through the site.

Proposals will be encouraged which enhance and extend the existing network of Green Corridors to open spaces within the urban area. Where new links are created that lead to the wider rural area such links should be designed so as not to introduce features incompatible with the local countryside and should not lead to an increase in impact from recreation on the South Pennine Moors.

New development is encouraged to incorporate new Green Corridors within landscaping and open space schemes and to establish links to the identified network of Green Corridors where possible.



5.45. Bradford Local Plan Strategic Core Policy 6 (SC6): Green Infrastructure recognises the importance of networks of multi-functional spaces and routes as an integral part of the urban fabric which improve urban and rural connectivity.

5.46. Ilkley is fortunate to have a network of green spaces and green corridors, linking different areas of the town, open spaces and gardens within the town, and the town itself to the wider countryside. These are shown on the Policies Map.

5.47. The Ilkley Design Statement (2002) notes the importance of the town's Green Corridors:

"Green corridors, such as those from the Moor to the Grove via Queens Road and from the top of Wells Road to Brook Street via Mill Ghyll, bring the countryside into the town centre and provide valuable habitats for flora and fauna. Pedestrian access to open countryside is facilitated by the extensive networks of paths and "snickets".

5.48. These mainly well wooded corridors carry surface water from Ilkley Moor to the River Wharfe, and provide shelter for birds, wildfowl and small mammals and insects. Green corridors are important for bats and birds, where tree cover along the becks comes right into the middle of the built-up area, good examples being Wheatley Raikes, Backstone Beck, Mill Gill, Darwin Gardens Millennium Green, Parish Ghyll, Ewe Croft Beck and its tributaries Spicey Ghyll and Hebers Ghyll. The rail corridor is also a valuable corridor for wildlife.

At times, birds and animals' transit between the river and the moor using the green corridors as cover e.g. grey wagtail, dipper, hirundines, mallard, thrushes, badgers, bats and deer, and many smaller creatures. The gardens of private houses enhance these green spaces. Mill Ghyll has street and submarine lights. Hebers Ghyll has a network of Victorian paths and bridges providing access from Queens Road to the Moor. Given the sensitive nature of the surrounding countryside any enhancements to the network of Green Infrastructure should not increase pressure from recreational activity on such areas.

5.49. Policy INDP11 seeks to protect the network of Green Corridors and encourages new development to include new Green Corridors linking to existing networks. Many of these Green Corridors also form part of the Bradford Habitat Network (Figure 11) - this is seeking to strengthen the resilience of biodiversity to climate change and avoid local extinctions. The existing Bradford Wildlife Habitat Network will be augmented with more detail at neighbourhood level to help refine the Local Wildlife Habitat Network.

Figure 11 - Bradford Wildlife Habitat Network within Ilkley (Source: West Yorkshire Ecology Service)

A map marking the Ilkley CP border and the Bradford Wildlife Habitat Network within Ilkley

Policy INDP12: Protecting Ilkley's Landscape Character

Development within Ilkley neighbourhood area should demonstrate careful consideration of any potential impacts on the sensitive landscape character of the area. Where necessary development should provide suitable measures for mitigation through siting, design and landscaping.

In particular, designs should consider long range views of the proposed development from publicly accessible sites and footpaths within the moorland shelf and Wharfedale, and views from the development towards the open countryside and key landmark features, such as the River Wharfe, Cow and Calf Rocks, and cairn viewpoint on the ridge above White Wells.

Landscape Area 4 - Rombalds Ridge

The Gritstone moorland landscape area (Rombalds Moor) has a strong character, high historic continuity, open character and prominent position within the landscape, this is a landscape very sensitive to development. Any extension to the existing few farmsteads should be small in scale and sensitively designed to minimise any negative visual impacts on this landscape.

Landscape Area 8 - Wharfedale

In areas of enclosed pastures, settlement edges should be clearly defined and utilise a framework of tree planting using locally appropriate species. The visual impact of any proposals should be considered in detail and additional on-site and off-site planting is encouraged to absorb the development into the landscape. The associated infrastructure of access roads, lighting and signage, will also need to be carefully considered.

In areas of wooded incline enclosed pastures settlement edges should be clearly defined and it may be appropriate to utilise a framework of tree planting around settlement edges, but this would be dependent on assessing the ecological value of grassland on areas proposed for planting and adjoining areas. The visual impact of any proposals should be considered in detail and depending on the outcomes of an ecological assessment, it may be appropriate to encourage additional on-site and off-site planting to absorb the development into the landscape.

N.B. The Landscape character areas referred to are those in the CBMDC Landscape Character Supplementary Planning Guidance (LCSPG) 2008



5.50. The landscape character of Ilkley is a significant asset for the town. The river, riverside footpaths, and many recreational areas around the river, provide an attractive, wide, open and accessible landscape space within the urban area. The settlement itself is framed by a dramatic Pennine moorland landscape that rises straight up from the clearly defined edges of the town.

5.51. The area's landscape significance is also recognised in the Bradford Local Plan Core Strategy. Strategic Core Policy 6 (SC6): "Green Infrastructure" identifies the River Wharfe and South Pennine Moors as strategic Green Infrastructure assets; and in Sub Area Policy WD1: "Wharfedale", criterion D. "Environment" states that development is required to protect and enhance the role of the River Wharfe, and recognise the importance of field patterns, tree cover and the wider context of moorland, river and woodland in … contributing towards Wharfedale's distinctive character and its role as a gateway to the wider countryside.

5.52. The Bradford Landscape Character Supplementary Planning Guidance (LCSPG) 2008 provides an existing statement of the landscape of the area along with its distinctive attributes and features, which it is desirable to conserve and enhance. The Neighbourhood Plan Area is located within Character Area 4: Rombalds Ridge and Character Area 8: Wharfedale. Each Landscape Character Assessment details the condition of the landscape and the sensitivity of the landscape to change, along with providing a set of policy guidelines for development. The landscape character area that is part of Rombalds Ridge, and lies within the neighbourhood plan boundary, is identified as gritstone moorland. The area identified as Rombalds Moor forms the central backbone of the character area of Rombalds Ridge. Rombalds Moorland has a prominent skyline from the Wharfe Valley and the open aspect looking out from key viewpoints is a particular strength. The landscape character areas that form part of the Wharfedale area are identified as: wooded incline, enclosed pasture and floodplain pasture.

5.53. The Policy Guidelines provided in the Potential Development sections of the LCSPG have been brought forward into NDP Policy INDP12.


Objective 4 – Biodiversity and Ecology

The INDP will value and nurture the neighbourhood area's wildlife habitats and conserve and enhance biodiversity, through the protection and maintenance of all blue and green infrastructure assets, including moorland, woodland, grassland, hedgerows and watercourses.

Policy INDP13: Protecting and Enhancing Biodiversity

Proposals for new development that impact on habitats and wildlife referred to in Bradford Core Strategy Strategic Core Policy SC8 and Policy EN2, including the Local Wildlife Sites (see Para 5.57) identified on the Policies Map, should demonstrate how biodiversity will be protected and enhanced by securing a net gain in biodiversity. Reference should also be made to 'Homes and Neighbourhoods: a Guide to Designing in Bradford'. This sets out ways that wildlife and green features can be integrated into developments at a variety of levels, (neighbourhoods, streets and individual housing).

New developments should identify and protect existing habitats on individual sites, and seek opportunities to reverse habitat fragmentation and provide new opportunities to extend biodiversity.

Landscaping schemes and building designs are encouraged to incorporate the following, where possible:

In wooded incline areas:

  1. Development should not fragment the woodland canopy Regeneration and planting of native species of local provenance is encouraged, to help ensure the long-term continuity of the wooded character.
  2. Walls and hedges should be conserved, strengthened and restored.
  3. Additional native woodland planting of local provenance around the edges of new developments is encouraged.

On the River Wharfe floodplain:

New built development will be restricted due to flood risk. However, areas of open space would be an acceptable use extending down to the River, and opportunities to enhance areas for wildlife should be taken wherever possible. For example:

  1. Hedgerow gaps should be filled with a range of native species of local provenance and hedgerow trees replanted.
  2. Woodland blocks have an even-age mature nature and re-planting/ underplanting is encouraged to provide a more diverse age structure.
  3. The river and bankside environments are important wildlife habitats. Landscaping schemes should conserve and enhance wetland habitats, such as wet meadows and marshy grasslands. The planting of willow, along with a coppice regime is particularly encouraged to support otters returning to this stretch of the Wharfe.

All developments are expected to result in measurable biodiversity net gain. Overall, designs for new buildings should secure ecological enhancements as part of landscaping and building design. Proposals could include enhancements such as sustainable drainage systems, green roofs, re-naturalising watercourses, woodland planting, roosting opportunities for bats, hedgehog corridors, the installation of bird nest boxes and the use of native species in the landscape planting.


The INDP supports the development of increased carbon capture on Ilkley Moor by restoring degraded blanket bog so that peat-forming sphagnum mosses can absorb and sequester carbon. This will enhance our resilience to climate change, improve water retention on the moor and seek to reduce the risk of flooding and fire in extreme weather conditions. Development proposals in areas of blanket bog including access tracks and other operational development requiring planning permission shall set out in detail how the proposed development would impact its function, including its hydrology, ecology and function as a carbon sink. Developments which degrade the function of existing blanket bog in these terms will be refused.


5.54. Ilkley has many significant natural heritage assets, linking across and throughan extensive network of green (woodlands, grasslands, parks and other open spaces) and blue infrastructure (water features – rivers, streams, ponds etc.). The Ilkley Design Statement 2002 identifies the major areas of open land within theneighbourhood area: the Valley Bottom, Panorama Woods and Ilkley Moor in the south. There are also open land areas west of Myddleton Lodge and the woods and fields up to Slates Lane; and to the east of Ben Rhydding and Middleton.

5.55. Parts of the moorlands are of European significance for breeding birds and,therefore, they are given a high level of protection through wildlife legislation (as a Special Protection Area and Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)) (Figure 12). As a Special Protection Area (SPA) and Special Area of Conservation (SAC), the South Pennine Moors are protected under the European Habitats Directive and the European Birds Directive because they contain habitat types which are rare or threatened, and due to the importance of the breeding bird population in the European context. Under its SPA designation the qualifying species are the merlin and golden plover and an assemblage of characteristic moorland and moorland-fringe species including the common sandpiper, dunlin, twite, snipe, curlew, wheatear, whinchat, redshank, ring ouzel and lapwing.

5.56. A range of impact pathways were identified through which proposals couldhave a significant effect, including urban edge effects, the potential loss of bird feeding sites and disturbance from increasing the numbers of people visiting the site for recreational purposes. A zone of influence" approach was adopted in core strategy policy SC8. The Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA) of the Core Strategy indicated that proposals in lower tier plans, which would include neighbourhood plans, would need to be subject to further and more detailed assessment. As the boundary of the South Pennine Moors SAC and SPA adjoins the northern boundary of Ilkley, then a range of potential impacts need to be considered. The INDP has also been screened for the purposes of Strategic Environmental Assessment and Habitat Regulations Assessment, this report is available separately.

5.57. The sites of ecological significance within Wharfedale are:

  • Ben Rhydding Gravel Pits Local Wildlife Site
  • Middleton Woods Local Wildlife Site
  • Owler Park and Spring Wood Local Wildlife Site
  • Terrace Ghyll Local Wildlife Site
  • Crabtree Ghyll Local Wildlife Site
  • Briery Wood and Hebers Wood Local Wildlife Site
  • Panorama Wood Local Wildlife Site
  • River Wharfe SEGI (being assessed for Local Wildlife Site status).

N.B: A number of the Local Wildlife Sites are also Ancient Woodlands.

5.58. The results of the "We need to talk about Ilkley survey" demonstrated that thetown's accessibility to the countryside and wildlife are very important to local people. Comments in response to Q1 "What do you like about Ilkley?", included "The moor, walks on the moor and Middleton Woods", "the greenery and open spaces along the river", "environment", "proximity to the moors", "trees" and "riverside".

5.59. CBMDC'sLandscape Character Supplementary Planning Guidanceincludesvarious policy guidelines for the appropriate management of the landscape areas, including relevant advice that could be used in landscaping schemes to support local biodiversity.

5.60. Policy INDP13 encourages new development to protect and enhance localbiodiversity assets and to incorporate landscaping schemes which are designed to support local wildlife.

Figure 12 Area Covered by Special Protection Area and Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) © Crown copyright [and database rights] 2019 OS 100055940 on behalf of Ilkley Town Council 1000057229.

Map marking the area that is covered by Protection Area and Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)


Objective 5 - Traffic and Transport

The INDP will seek to reduce reliance on private car use by supporting the development and usage of multi-modal transport assets, whilst creating an attractive and usable public realm for pedestrians and cyclists. Where private vehicle use is necessary encouraging use and switching to low and zero emissions vehicles e.g. through the provision of electric charging points.

Objective 6 – Sustainable Access

The INDP will seek to increase the number and quality of walking and cycling routes within the town to facilitate safe access to integrated public transport, schools, shops, workplaces and services. The INDP will support sustainable travel plans and the wider introduction of 20 mph zones and traffic calming measures where needed around the town.

Policy INDP14: Traffic and Transport

To support the development of sustainable multi-modal transport and reduce vehicle emissions development will be expected to show how measures promote active and healthy lifestyles and help make walking, cycling and the use of public transport a first choice for all and reduce the need to travel by private car. In particular, proposals should seek to incorporate sustainable multi-modal transport solutions and infrastructure which focus on emissions reduction (e.g. car parking spaces and charging facilities in accessible, convenient and safe places for plug-in and other ultra-low emission vehicles). The INDP promotes the use of mobility sharing schemes such as car clubs, car sharing and electric bike clubs.

All new houses where dedicated parking per house is provided will be required to have an appropriately located charging point. Where general parking areas are included in housing developments, these are required to provide sufficient accessible charging points. Those proposing new employment, leisure or retail developments are encouraged to provide electric charging points for staff and/or users.


5.61. Wharfedale occupies a strategic location in terms of its geography and functional links with the rest of Bradford district, Leeds district and West Yorkshire. This connectivity is attractive for residents and businesses but also poses problems in terms of maintaining good quality transport links and journey reliability times, particularly on roads such as the A65. Locally, from the questionnaire survey, we know that the size and form of Ilkley allow residents to walk to many of the things they use, such as jobs and services. A sizeable proportion of the local community also cycle. A drawback to both of those modes of transport can be the area's hilly terrain, however electric bicycles are helping make Ilkley accessible to more residents and visitors.

5.62. Car ownership in Ilkley is high with 83% of households having access to one or more cars; compared with the CBMDC area where 69.5% of households have access to one or more cars; and England where the figure is 74.2%. Many Ilkley residents commute to work, with the average daily commute being a journey of 20.9 kilometres (km); the comparable figures for the CBMDC area is 12.7 km; and for England 14.9 km. Despite the relatively good rail service Ilkley commuters mainly travel by car (52.7%) with just 15.5% using the train.

5.63. From this starting point, the INDP seeks to encourage further alternatives to the private car and the emissions they generate. To do this the INDP will support sustainable multi-modal transport solutions and sustainable walking and cycling access around the town and to surrounding areas, including support for the Wharfedale Greenway.

5.64. The level of car parking provision, both on- and off-street is an on-going problem. This has been raised by both local residents and the Town Council with CBMDC which carries responsibility for regulation of traffic (on-street parking orders) and management of certain off-street parking. These powers include setting of charges and enforcement.

5.65. Air pollution from vehicle emissions is a public health risk. The INDP's policies by encouraging walking, cycling, public transport, mobility sharing schemes (such as car clubs, car sharing and electric bike clubs) and low emission vehicles will contribute to reducing this risk.

5.66. Policy INDP15 sets out a set of principles that will be used to ensure that, where appropriate, new development improves the environment for all so that Ilkley becomes even more of a walkable and cyclable town.

Policy INDP15: Walking and Cycling

All new development should be within reasonable walking and cycling distance of community facilities and services. All new development should include facilities for walking and cycling that are of good design and accessible to all. The INDP will support proposals for the Wharfedale Greenway and dedicated and segregated cycle paths including road markings where needed. It will also support the wider introduction of 20 mph zones and traffic calming measures to facilitate safer walking and cycling around the town. Sustainable travel plans (for schools, all larger businesses, leisure and residential developments) will also be supported. Proposals will be assessed against the following:

  1. Ease and directness of new connections to the existing footpath, bridleway and cycle path network;
  2. Permeability and legibility of the footpath and cycle path network within the development site;
  3. Use of sustainable materials and design that ensures access for
  4. all users;
  5. Where necessary, signage that is of good design, appropriate to the local context and avoids clutter;
  6. Designed in such a way to be safe, appropriately lit and minimise opportunities for crime; and
  7. Include native tree and shrub planting that is easily maintained and suitable to the route and its local context.

When new routes have to be provided, these will be of good design based on current best practice and provide direct access to local facilities and employment opportunities. The loss of existing footpaths and cycle paths will be resisted.



Objective 7 – Leisure and Tourism

The INDP will support, protect and enhance the range of cultural, leisure, sporting and landscape assets available to the community and to visitors

Policy INDP16: Leisure and Tourism

Development of existing and new tourism and leisure facilities will be supported where such development will not have a significant adverse impact on existing facilities; designated wildlife sites, European designated sites (Ilkley Moor) and, in addition, in the Green Belt, where it meets national Green Belt planning policy.

All new facilities should have good access by walking, cycling and integrated public transport and adequate cycle parking and storage.

Support will be given to proposals for the Wharfedale Greenway and dedicated and segregated cycleways.

Proposals for a creative/heritage hub focused on the Manor House, The Castle Collective, Riverside Gardens, and with improved connectivity to other cultural assets, including the Playhouse and Cinema will be supported.



5.67. llkley has been a tourist destination for well over a century. The town has manybuilt assets which support tourism including Ilkley Lido, the Town Hall complex and the Manor House. There is an opportunity for the Cinema, Manor House, Castle Collective, and Playhouse to collaborate more closely to develop a creative heritage hub in this part of the town. This could be supported by sustainable public realm enhancements that encourage pedestrian movement and connectivity. llkley Moor is the predominant green asset along with the Dales Way and its footpath links from Leeds, Harrogate and Bradford. Ilkley has several parks and recreation areas such as the Riverside Gardens, Mill Ghyll and Hebers Ghyll. The maintenance and upkeep of these assets has suffered in recent years and the INDP supports and encourages their conservation and enhancement. The INDP supports CBMDC's Management Plan for Ilkley Moor. It also recognises the special status of the moor and adjoining land under the EU Habitats Directives. The Moor is a world-renowned landscape, highly regarded and much used for recreation by the community and by visitors. It provides exciting views and vistas on approach to Ilkley from all directions, and from virtually everywhere within the town. But being such a popular resource has its downside and such tourism needs to be managed in a way that conserves the environmental character of the area.

5.68. It is important to recognise that tourism is also a continuing and major financialand employment contributor to the modern Ilkley economy that will extend into the future, and that the key issues that adversely affect the visitor experience need to be addressed, for example infrastructure deficiencies such as car and cycle parking, toilet provision and signage.

5.69. As well as the Moor, the Lido and the River Wharfe there are many otherattractions that both visitors and residents can enjoy, including festivals, cultural and sporting events, and it is important that the Visitor Information Centre is maintained as a vital resource for information and ticket sales.

5.70. Policy INDP16 sets out the types of tourism related development that will beencouraged. This will support the aim of the Core Strategy to ensure that in 2030 Ilkley will have become a principal town with vibrant public administrative, cultural, retail, tourism and leisure functions.


Objective 8 – Sustainable Economic Development

The INDP will promote increased economic activity by encouraging development proposals for small-scale enterprises in sustainable locations.

Policy INDP17: Ilkley Town Centre

To ensure that the vitality and viability of Ilkley Town Centre is maintained and enhanced, development of retail, office, leisure, and cultural facilities will be supported when consistent with Policy EC5: City, Town, District and Local Centres of the Core Strategy.

In order to thrive as a sustainable town where residents can shop locally, and tourists desire to visit, it is important the Primary Shopping Area provides a variety of retail offers (Class E (a) and Class F2 (a)).

Proposals to re-use upper floors within the town centre for retail, office, leisure, cultural facilities, business and residential uses will be supported.

Temporary uses particularly those that bring back into use vacant units will be supported.


5.71. Ilkley town centre constitutes the "original" Ilkley which was the full extent ofthe town until the second half of the 19th century. It encompasses the two roads running east to west – part of the dominant A65 Leeds-Skipton road (Leeds Road/ Church Street) and a lesser route from Ben Rhydding comprising Springs Lane, Station Road and the Grove in the town centre. These routes are linked from north to south by Brook Street and this area contains the town's shops, pubs and restaurants, public buildings (including the Kings Hall), most churches, central car park and rail and bus stations. Supermarkets/large stores have been developed adjacent to the railway station (Marks and Spencer), Railway Road (Boyes), Leeds Road (Booths} and Springs Lane (Tesco). There is little open space, but the town centre is enhanced by the presence of well-maintained flower beds at the top of tree-lined Brook Street and along the tree-lined Grove. The Grove, and the way it is managed, are important features of public life in the centre of Ilkley. The bandstand in the grounds of Abbeyfield offers public amenity and the wooded Mill Ghyll serves as a green and physical link between the town centre and Ilkley Moor. All the central green and landscaped features should be preserved.

5.72. As Ilkley is identified as a Principal Town in the settlement hierarchy ofCBMDC's Local Plan Core Strategy, the town centre has an important role to play as a focus for the community and wider area. Ilkley's town centre role will be supported as a location for a mix of cultural, retail, tourism and leisure functions and office/ employment development on an appropriate scale. The extent and range of the town centre uses, coupled with the centrally located bus and railway station, means the town centre will continue to be the best location for shopping, services, leisure and employment activities to serve the people of Ilkley and nearby villages and visitors to the town and surrounding countryside. There is an opportunity for the Cinema, Manor House, Castle Collective, and Playhouse to collaborate more closely to develop a creative heritage hub in this part of the town. This could be supported by sustainable public realm enhancements that encourage pedestrian movement and connectivity.

5.73. Ilkley shopping centre is the third largest centre in the CBMDC area in termsof the amount of the retail and associated service uses floor space (Figure 13). Ilkley has the highest proportion of comparison goods shop units in the CBMDC area, reflecting relatively higher local incomes and the spend from tourism. Vacant units (6.1% in 2012) are also substantially below the CBMDC (15%) and national figures (12.2%) although this figure has increased at times, e.g. 2006-2012. Ilkley centre also has high proportions of floorspace for convenience retail and leisure uses. The CBMDC Retail and Leisure Study concluded that there is no need, over the plan period, for a new large supermarket in Ilkley. The retail policies outlined in the Bradford Local Plan Core Strategy seek to ensure identified needs are accommodated in the central shopping area of Ilkley or failing this on the edge of the centre at Lower Wellington Road as set by development plan policy. This provides the scope and flexibility for modest qualitative improvements in the shopping offer of the centre.

5.74. The Kings Hall and Winter Gardens, Ilkley Playhouse, Ilkley Cinema and the Manor House provide popular venues for theatre, music and other arts and literature events. Also, important to the enjoyment of the town centre are the independent specialist shops, restaurants and cafes, such as the Box Tree and Betty's that also attract visitors to Ilkley.

5.75. The INDP supports Policy EC5(J) of the Core Strategy in encouraging further residential development in the town centre provided it is above ground floor level. Proposals for non-retail uses in Class E should retain or re-introduce a shopfront in line with the Conservation Area Appraisal and Policy INDP19 of this plan.

5.76. Policy INDP17 sets out how Ilkley will remain a key local focal point for shopping, leisure, health, education and cultural facilities

Figure 13: Ilkley Town Centre and Primary Shopping Area © Crown copyright [and database rights] 2019 OS 100055940 on behalf of Ilkley Town Council 1000057229.

A map marking both the Ilkley Town Centre and the Primary Shopping Area


Town Centre Boundary Key guide to the boundary line used to demonstrate the Town Centre boundary
Primary Shopping Area Key guide to the boundary line used to demonstrate the Primary Shopping Area

Policy INDP18: Public Realm

Proposals that include new, or replacement, public realm features such as open spaces, paving, seating, lighting, street furniture, planting areas and signage should be of good quality and distinctive design. Public realm should make a positive contribution to the local and wider environment of the town by using suitable designs, materials, colours, vernacular features, seeking to use the prevailing local style for such features and avoiding clutter.

Where heritage features (telephone boxes, grilles, grates, nameplates, stone setts, paving stones and stone kerb edgings etc.) are already to be found within an area proposed for new, or replacement, public realm every effort should be made to retain such features in situ. Where this is not possible such features should be conserved, and, wherever possible re-used elsewhere within the town.


5.77. Policy INDP18 sets out to ensure that all new development that includesnew or replacement public realm features (street lighting, open spaces, paving, street furniture etc.) proceeds in a manner that uses design features, materials and colours that enable such public realm features to make a positive contribution to the immediate local and wider town environment and experience. By doing this the INDP will help to ensure that Ilkley retains and strengthens its already distinctive built environment. In this regard, off-the-shelf solutions using inappropriate design, materials and colours, will not be supported. Where development including public realm features takes place without the need for planning consent, agencies and developers will be encouraged to meet the requirements of policy INDP18. Those proposing new public realm should also seek to consult the local business community, Town Council and Civic Society before such proposals are finalised.

5.78. In particular, applicants should seek to introduce features and styles that areeasy to maintain and create a degree of uniformity that suggests an Ilkley brand or style. Clutter, through over-use of items, such as street furniture and signage, particularly where public realm projects have been implemented, incrementally, over long periods of time, should be avoided. Street furniture should have a purpose and obvious use, it should not be included just "for the sake of it".

5.79. Hard landscaping surfaces and boundary treatments should retain originalstone and ironwork. Where new materials are used they should be natural stone in the Conservation Areas and high quality, matching alternatives elsewhere

Policy INDP19: Shopfronts

To maintain the quality and distinctiveness of the local built environment, new shopfronts should meet the following:

  1. Shopfronts should be of traditional construction, retaining existing traditional and period features and style, where possible. Where such features are to be removed they should be replaced with suitable contemporary alternatives;
  2. The incorporation of blinds and canopies, complementary to the building, and surrounding properties, is encouraged;
  3. Signage should preferably be painted timber and where projecting signs are used these should be positioned in line with the fascia board and top hung. Internally illuminated signs will not be supported. External illumination of signs should be discreet and not mask architectural details;
  4. Shopfront fascia signs should be appropriate when considered in relation to the other elements and proportions of the shop front and should not have a negative impact on the frontage of upper floors;
  5. Within Conservation Areas careful selection of colour is important. Applicants will be encouraged to use restrained shades of maroon, dark green, black, blue, green and grey as lighter colours appear more intrusive. Garish or fluorescent colours should be avoided;
  6. Security grilles should be internal and allow views of internal space and lighting in order to avoid dead frontages.


5.80. Policy INDP19 sets out local policy on shopfronts, applicants are also directed to CBMDC's Shopfronts Design Guide Supplementary Planning Document and guidance on applicants for shopfront security

Policy INDP20: Economy and Employment

The following existing employment areas will also be protected for employment uses (Use Class E(g)):

  • INDP20/1 – Cemetery Offices
  • INDP20/2 - Golden Butts Road
  • INDP20/3 - Little Lane/Lower Wellington Road
  • INDP20/4 - East Parade
  • INDP20/5 - Valley Drive
  • INDP20/6 - Brewery Road
  • INDP20/7 - Nile Road
  • INDP20/8 - Valley Drive
  • INDP20/9 - Coutances Way
  • INDP20/10 - Ashlands Road Industrial Estate
  • INDP20/11 - Riverside Business Park and Backstone Business Park
  • INDP20/12 - Chantry Drive
  • INDP20/13 - Sefton Drive
  • INDP20/14 – Springs Lane



5.81. Policy INDP20 sets out how the INDP could help manage and improve car parking in the town. This policy is not a planning policy of the INDP, this is a set of supporting actions that the Town Council will seek to influence the relevant body to implement.

5.82. Policy INDP20 identifies existing employment areas that should be protected for continued employment use. It is important to protect these areas so that Ilkley retains a reasonable balance between homes and local jobs. The loss of such areas, particularly for housing, could see the town become even more reliant on people travelling elsewhere to work. The CBMDC Employment Land Review (2010) also concluded that such sites should be protected.

5.83. The CBMDC Employment Land Review (2010 and 2011 update) concluded that within the centre of Ilkley there was only limited accommodation for business uses with large floor areas. In part, this was due to competition from higher value uses, such as retail. The majority of floorspace that is available is in converted terraced properties and upper floors. Some of this floorspace is in poor condition.

Supporting Town Council Actions – Ilkley Town Centre Traffic and Car Parking

To reduce congestion and improve traffic flow within and around Ilkley Town Centre the following measures will be pursued:

a) New, or substantially altered, developments should provide adequate off-street car parking provision to avoid further on-street congestion generated by occupiers and visitors;

b) The Town Council will encourage CBMDC to maximise the use of available off and on-street space to facilitate short-stay parking by shoppers and visitors;

c) Discouragement of all-day parking in the central areas by people commuting into and out of the town;

d) Protection of the interests of residents in central areas who have a need to park near their property;

e) The Town Council will keep under review the CBMDC scheme for the regulation of parking in the central area of Ilkley, including the central car park, as well as the relevant charges. It will also consider if modifications are necessary, as well as considering parking issues in the central Ben Rhydding area. Appropriate representation will be made to CBMDC.

f) Further provision should be made for commercial unloading/loading for retail premises;

g) Promoting the use of the hopper bus service and seeking to have this operating throughout the day and during the peak commuter hours. Integrating this with local school bus service for the community as a whole.

h) Improvements to infrastructure for electric vehicles, for example charging points.



Objective 9 – Social Inclusion

The INDP will recognise the differing needs of all demographic and social groups in the Town, address the challenges of an ageing population, foster a sense of community, and promote wellbeing, foster a sense of community and promoted wellbeing.

Policy INDP21: Meeting the Needs of All

To ensure that the vitality and viability of Ilkley Town Centre is maintained and enhanced development of retail, office, leisure, and cultural facilities will be supported when consistent with Policy EC5: City, Town, District and Local Centres of the Core Strategy.

  1. To ensure that development proposals meet the needs of all groups and sections of the community they should include, where appropriate:
  2. Provision of suitable access for all users of the development including, for example, those using wheelchairs and pushchairs;
  3. Be in a location that can be accessed by all users by walking, cycling, integrated public transport and motor vehicles;
  4. Provision of spaces and places for people of all ages and backgrounds to meet;
  5. Incorporation of measures and features to ensure that any routes (e.g. footpaths, streets, roads etc.) through a site are welcoming, overlooked and safe;
  6. Incorporation of measures and features that allow buildings and spaces to adapt and change over time, so they can meet the needs of a changing population and changing technologies; and
  7. Where appropriate, inclusion of spaces and features that support healthy and active lifestyles. For example the Wheatley Lane Recreation Ground is an essential green space that should not be developed, but preserved for the local community for a wide range of uses. This includes being the most suitable venue for the annual
  8. Ben Rhydding Community Fete (established 2006) which aims to foster a sense of community and enables people of all ages, social and demographic groups to meet. The Wheatley Lane Recreation Ground is also home to the Ben Rhydding Community Orchard (established 2019) and is set up and used regularly for football matches during the season.



5.84. To ensure that the INDP recognises the differing needs of all sections ofthe local community the plan will be subject to a process of Equalities Impact Assessment. This assessment will be used to inform the drafting of the INDP and its policies. We know from our questionnaire survey that most people feel there is a "quite or very strong" sense of community in the town.

5.85. The CBMDCInfrastructure Plan(2013) which takes into account the effects of1,000 new homes in Ilkley identifies school provision as a critical infrastructure issue in Wharfedale. There is an existing capacity issue, at both primary and secondary school level, in Wharfedale, due to its popularity. This will increase with the level of new development planned for the area. School capacity needs to be addressed for a number of reasons, including the impact it can have on social inclusion; quality of life and distance travelled and number of journeys, especially by car. The Infrastructure Plan indicates need for an additional 112 primary school and 98 secondary schoolplaces by 2028. These places will be met by expansion at existing schools.

5.86. Ilkley also has an older population (2011 average age 45.1 years) than the restof the district (average age 36.2 years) and England (average age 39.3 years). In 2011, 25% of Ilkley residents were aged over 65; 13.3% for the CBMDC area; 16.4% for England. This population is also ageing. To help meet the needs of all groups, and to ensure planning decisions are responsive to the needs of all, Policy INDP21 has been prepared.

[1] Ilkley will provide 1,000 new homes up to 2030, based on the average household size of 2.3 persons per household in Ilkley in the 2011 Census (the most up to date available).

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