Councillors from rival parties have joined forces to fight unpopular plans to make a Lindley road one-way as part of a scheme to encourage walking and cycling.

Liberal Democrat councillors Cahal Burke and Anthony Smith have teamed up with Conservative Adam Gregg to show a united front.

The three councillors say that some of the proposals for the A629 Halifax Road between Huddersfield and Halifax – such as the one-way proposal for Occupation Road – need to be changed.

The scheme, put forward by Kirklees Council, Calderdale Council and the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, aims to improve road safety, reduce congestion, speed up journey times and reduce air pollution, while also improving walking, cycling and bus travel along the busy route.

However, elements of Phase 4 of the project, which focuses on improving walking, cycling and bus travel in the Lindley ward, are controversial.

READ MORE: How the ‘devil was in the detail’ of the A629 public consultation

The three Lindley councillors believe proposals for Occupation Road and Thornhill Road are unpopular and will create further problems for residents and road users.

The existing plan is to make Occupation Road a one-way system northbound, with a shared footway and cycleway, while a segregated cycle route will be created on Thornhill Road.

Following opposition from local residents to the one-way plan, the Lib Dem councillors organised a petition, signed by well over 300 people.

Councillors Cahal Burke (left) and Anthony Smith

The three Lindley councillors are united in opposition to the proposals for Occupation Road and Thornhill Road and are urging Kirklees Council to revise the scheme.

Clr Burke said while he supported the overall aims the current proposals were not the answer.

He added: “If the public consultation undertaken last year is meaningful and not tokenistic, I believe that the scheme will need to be revised. However, I’m concerned that the views and concerns of many residents are not being heard and considered.

“I think there should have been a more joined-up approach as part of the public consultation, so that the views of residents, motorists, walking and cycling groups are all considered.

READ MORE: How Lib Dem councillors launched petition over Occupation Road

“As ward councillors, we recognise that it’s vital to work together. We will always endeavour to listen to residents and work for the benefit of all our residents and communities.

“Many people are opposed to the proposals for Occupation Road and Thornhill Road, so we are demanding that Kirklees Council and WYCA do not go ahead with the project in its current form.

“We want them to stop the process, reflect on the views of residents, explore other options and revise the scheme.”

Clr Adam Gregg in Occupation Road

Residents held a meeting with councillors on Saturday where the strength of feeling was clear and Clr Gregg said: “I strongly object to Kirklees Council’s proposals to make Occupation Road one-way.

“When I undertook a survey, 86% of local residents said they did not want this. It was great to see so many of them turn out to make their feelings known on Saturday.

“Lindley is a very busy village but you hardly ever see a bike in the centre. The Labour-run council have also not carried out a business case to establish demand or need for this cycle route, and their consultation has been poor.

“I am calling on the council to listen to residents and scrap the scheme or return to the drawing board with a viable business case.”

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