FURIOUS locals have been left staring at a £5.5million ghost housing estate after builders downed tools – but no one will help.
Residents near Keighley, West Yorks, are raging after work ceased on a 41-home development over a bitter planning war with the council.
No work has been carried out for months in the abandoned lot, which now blights Long Lee's picturesque landscape.
But, developer Urban Developments (York) Ltd, say the "temporarily halted" construction is the result of "a technicality with a planning condition".
Now neighbours living opposite the ghost estate have slammed the controversial project, which was due to be completed this year.
Scathing local, Pat, said: "The view was lovely – you could see straight down the field.
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"Now we've got this complete eyesore. If they brought me a key, I wouldn't have one of these houses.
"The ones they've built – there's actually nothing inside. It's just bricks, windows and a roof.
"There's no sewage or drainage pipes to the houses because they're all stacked up at the bottom of the site.
"They wanted to launch the site in December but it's impossible."
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"There's nobody there, it's locked up completely. We haven't seen a builder in months," added the 79-year-old.
"We are none the wiser of what's happening. They need to tell people what's going on. They're saying work will commence shortly but I'll believe it when I see it."
The homes were being build by Urban Developments (York) Ltd, part of the Urban Group, and Bradford-based social housing provider, Accent.
These firms have blamed the issue on a planning dispute with Bradford Council.
Now we've got this complete eyesore. If they brought me a key, I wouldn't have one of these houses."
And locals live in fear the disagreement could span months, and see the "eye-sore" untouched for months.
Carer Kirsty Woodward, 47, said: "It's a complete eyesore. We haven't got a clue what's going on.
"I'd prefer the houses not to be there at all so we retained our view of the hills and the countryside.
"But if it's started, they should finish it. We don't want to be looking out over an unfinished housing estate."
NO END IN SIGHT
IT worker Michael Crabtree, 47, told Sun Online: "It's a bit of a mess.
"There are tiles missing, some have been off since November when we had strong winds.
"Some of the windows of the homes have been left open since May.
"There's lots of rainwater that will have gone in. I'd be concerned about buying one because of their quality.
Mr Crabtree added: "They've not been forthcoming as to why there's been a stoppage.
"We want to know what's going on.
"How long it's going to be left for, who knows. We didn't even want them in the first place."
Carer Renji Joseph, 57, said: "Our whole view has gone now – everyone is complaining.
"We're just looking out over an abandoned building site. There's not been a builder here for three months.
"Some of the houses have slates missing. There's loads of dust blowing from the site which covers our windows.
"We worry that we're going to be looking out over this for years."
There's lots of rainwater that will have gone in. I'd be concerned about buying one because of their quality.
Bradford Council confirmed it is in discussions with the company over a "highways matter".
A spokesperson said: "We are continuing to work with the developer on the detail of the existing highway, and that of the new highway. This discussion is ongoing and we will continue to liaise with the developer as part of the required process."
The development, which began in July 2021, was supposed to offer a mix of two and three-bedroom affordable homes, and properties for rent.
This is not the first time it has sparked outrage.
In November last year, residents were fuming after water started running from the land into their gardens.
One homeowner, whose property backs onto the site, claimed a river regularly streamed into his back garden, leaving a mess of silt and slurry.
A spokesman for housing provider Accent said: "In order to meet the Highways standards, we are awaiting technical approval for the Section 38 and S278 works from Bradford Council.
"This is linked to a pre-commencement planning condition, that prevents the infrastructure works from commencing at the bottom of the site.
"We are working closely with Urban Group and Highways to settle this swiftly and expect this to be resolved shortly.
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"This site is designed to provide 41 new homes for affordable rent and shared ownership, as part of our commitment to provide homes for those in housing need, and are keen to see the construction complete as soon as possible."
Urban told the Keighley News: "We are liaising closely with Bradford Council and hope to be able to restart onsite very soon."
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