Pub plan for hill fort expected to be dropped

CONTROVERSIAL plans for a pub at the site of an ancient monument and prominent Yorkshire landmark look set to be withdrawn following a large number of objections.

Huddersfield MP Barry Sheerman has met with the developers behind a plan for a hotel and pub at Castle Hill, a scheduled ancient monument and once the site of an Iron Age fortification.

Mr Sheerman said the developer would look again at a potential development once archaeological surveys had been carried out.

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The Labour MP is proposing to have a meeting with the developers, their architects and Kirklees Council officials to see what form of building might best suit the sensitive site.

Mr Sheerman wants to see some kind of development but wants it to be environmentally-friendly and sensitive to the site, its history and location.

His intervention has been welcomed by Kirklees Council leader Mehboob Khan, who also wants to see some kind of building at the site because there are currently no facilities for visitors.

The planning application has attracted 79 objections, among them Huddersfield Civic Society and senior archaeologists from a range of bodies.

There have been 16 representations in favour of the plans.

One of Britain’s leading archaeology charities, the Council for British Archaeology, was among those objecting to the scheme.

In a letter to the council, the CBA said the plans to build a hotel and pub were “nothing short of disastrous”.

The letter added: “The proposals would be detrimental to one of the most significant historic sites in Kirklees.

“The subsequent effects of allowing this kind of development and the precedent it would set would be nothing short of disastrous.”

A council spokeswoman said yesterday that the authority had not heard from the developer about the plan being withdrawn.