Village News


12 February 2011    -    Parish council is seeking villagers' views on Steeton community centre bid

Villagers have been invited to comment on proposals for a new community centre in Steeton.

Councillor David Mullen at the planned site of the new community centre

But Steeton-with-Eastburn Parish Council chairman Councillor David Mullen stressed the plans remained at an early, tentative stage.

“We’re still quite a long way from even submitting a planning application,” he said. “But if the whole village became involved in this I think that would be fantastic.”

He said the proposals grew out of Steeton and Eastburn’s parish plan, produced in 2008, when reaction to the document showed a desire for some form of community hub to help bring residents together in the same meeting place.

The parish council responded by setting up a steering group to examine the issue.

It has suggested a new centre could be developed next to Steeton’s bowling green, in Skipton Road, which is owned by the parish council.

Councillor Mullen said: “We appointed an architect who came up with some brief ideas.

“The pavilion which is already on the bowling green site is becoming unusable. It was built 20 to 25 years ago with a lifespan of only five years. It isn’t DDA (Disability Discrimination Act) compliant and isn’t fit for purpose as a public building.”

He said if a new community centre was located in this area it would not be positioned on the site of the existing pavilion, but would not be on the green itself either.

“The bowling green is not going,” he said. “And I want to make it clear that the plan we have at the moment is only the first draft.”

The sketch plan for the potential facility is available to view on the parish council website, People wanting to see the plan should click on the “community hub” heading.

Any feedback can be e-mailed to

The statement accompanying the sketch plan says: “Eighty per cent of the respondents to the recent parish plan questionnaire wanted better meeting facilities to create a stronger community.

“The parish council is committed to responding to this.

“The hub would provide very flexible accommodation for use by groups in the villages.”

It says the centre could benefit organisations such as crown green bowlers and youth groups, while providing a venue for neighbourhood police, library and other community services.

Coun Mullen added: “I’ve always thought of this as a five-year project. That’s particularly the case now, with funding being so scarce.

“I’ve mentioned this topic at neighbourhood forums and it’s been included in our newsletter more than once. If more people have views then we’d like to know them – everything is relevant.”

From the archive

© Newsquest Media Group 2011

10 February 2011    -    Ward to close at Airedale General Hospital, Steeton

Bosses in Airedale Hospital, Steeton, are closing a ward with the loss of 16 beds as part of a plan to care for more patients closer to their homes.

Ward three, which takes acute admissions, is due to close on Tuesday, March 1.

No staff will be made redundant as they will be re-deployed to other wards and departments across the hospital.

Airedale NHS Foundation Trust is planning to reorganise where and how it provides care for patients who are looked after in hospital but do not need acute medical care.

It is thought that about 30 per cent of patients come into this category.

The reorganisation is part of a drive to improve the way patients are admitted and discharged at the hospital.

Christine Miles, interim director of operations at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We know that at any given time, there are around 20 to 25 patients in the hospital who do not need acute medical care.

“They would benefit from being looked after, with support, such as telemedicine, at home, in a care home or another transitional setting.

“By improving the way we manage care, we can prevent them being admitted to hospital by identifying changes in their conditions early. We can then provide health care locally to help them get well again.

“In the same way, we want patients who no longer need acute medical care to be able to get back to their families earlier.”

Natalie Ratcliffe, area organiser for Unison, said hospital management at Airedale had failed to consult staff over the ward closure.

In addition, four beds had been lost on ward 21, a maternity ward and ward 19, a private ward, was threatened with closure, she said.

“They need to start consulting with us if they want to do this amicably,” she said. “If they don’t we will take action. We will be organising a meeting and starting to talk to members about what action they are prepared to take.”

There has also been criticism from Liberal Democrat councillors in West Craven.

Coun David Whipp, who represents Barnoldswick on Pendle Borough Council, said: “This sounds more like cost cutting than improving patient care.

“With fewer beds, emergency admissions will become even more difficult and the risk of people being discharged too early will increase. With local authority social care budgets under pressure, this is a risky decision at the wrong time.”

From the archive

© Newsquest Media Group 2011

8 February 2011    -    Putting the boot in for charity

Steeton Football Club want your old boots.

The West Riding County Amateur League club are collecting for the charity Boots For Africa.

Any unwanted football boots can be brought to the Craven, Aire & Wharfe Junior League’s general meeting at Keighley Rugby Union Football Club on Monday, February 21.

The website address for the charity, which is backed by Sheffield Football Club and the Football Association, is

From the archive

© Newsquest Media Group 2011

3 February 2011    -    Year of concerts for Steeton Male Voice Choir

Performances in Keighley, Bingley, Haworth, Sutton and Glusburn feature in this year's programme from Steeton Male Voice Choir.

The year's public performances begin on Saturday at St Mary's Church, Long Preston, then in February 26 at Holy Trinity Church in Ilkley.

Local performances include Glusburn Institute (March 5), Keighley Shared Church with the Glen Singers (July 2), Haworth Parish Church (July 30) and Sutton Village Hall (September 10).

There are several concerts in the Yorkshire Dales, one in Blackpool, and Blackpool, and All Saints Church, Bingley (March 19), and St Margaret's Church, Ilkley.

From the archive

© Newsquest Media Group 2011

29 January 2011    -    Parish councillor welcomes proposal for Millennium Business Park

A new £10 million hotel is expected to create jobs and stimulate the local economy.

An artist’s impression of the hotel proposal An artist’s impression of the hotel proposal

Detailed plans for the 80-room building at the Millennium Business Park at Steeton, near Keighley, have been submitted to Bradford Council.

A crescent-shaped building would take centre stage in the new development.

Steeton-with-Eastburn parish councillor Su Thompson said it was a “positive” development which would bring jobs and raise the profile of the village.

“Steeton is on a gateway to the Yorkshire Dales and it doesn’t have hotel facilities like this,” she said.

The plans have been compiled on behalf of Acorn Stairlifts, an international company with offices in the business park.

It was hoped the application would go before City Hall planners before the end of March.

From the archive

© Newsquest Media Group 2011

28 January 2011    -    Traffic-jam fears over homes plan

Steeton councillors are concerned that plans for a new 220-home development at Thornhill Road could cause traffic jams in the village.

Last week Steeton-with-Eastburn Parish Council carried out its own traffic survey at the junction of Skipton Road and Thornhill Road, which would be used as the main access for the development.

Councillors armed with tally counters counted 2,000 cars passing through the junction during a busy two-and-a-half-hour period last Wednesday morning.

They also surveyed traffic over a three-hour period in the afternoon.

Councillor Roger Lambert said: “We want to make Steeton a better place to live and the aspect of this huge scheme that concerns us most is the traffic.

“There’s no way you can have 20 more cars backing up onto Thornhill Road. It’ll jam up the road. It’s the wrong route for access to the development.”

Councillor Lambert said the parish council had conducted its own traffic survey because of concerns about a transport assessment used by the developer, Redrow Homes.

“Their assumption makes no recognition of standing traffic that occurs at various times of day,” he said. “They may have underestimated the number of cars using the road.”

Councillor David Mullen, chairman of the parish council, said between 7am and 9.30am last Wednesday there was consistent build-up of Keighley-bound traffic on Skipton Road that queued from Station Road to Airedale Hospital for a period of 75 minutes.

“What we want to do is get evidence of what we already knew anecdotally,” said Councillor Mullen. “We want to see how our figures stack up with those used by the developer.”

Councillor Mullen said 220 more houses would increase the size of the village by 15 per cent, which he warned would have an impact on local amenities.

“The schools are full, the doctors’ surgery is full and there are not many shops, which means people will have to go out of the village to shop,” he said.

“It’s a given that these houses are going to be built, but what the parish council and residents want is that this will sit comfortably in Steeton.”

At a council meeting earlier this month, members raised a number of concerns about the development.

They recommended refusal of the application on the grounds that the documents supplied with the plan did not provide enough information to make an informed recommendation.

A spokesman for Redrow Homes said: “This is land already approved for residential development, including the access. Local businesses should benefit from an influx of new home owners and our development will also create much needed jobs.”

© Newsquest Media Group 2011