Parish Council accused of land-grab in reshuffle of boundaries denies claims

Harewood PARISH councillors have vetoed an alleged “land-grab” by the neighbouring village of Shadwell.

And Harewood with Wigton Moor Parish Council said “No” to boundary changes proposed by Shadwell PC.

The two councils had talks over three options which have all now been rejected by Harewood councillors.

One option was that Shadwell should take a huge swathes of green fields between Shadwell Lane and Tarn Lane.

Harewood parish chairman Ron Farrar said: “We thought Shadwell wanted to tidy up the boundaries. We didn’t expect a land-grab of this size”.

Because the proposals needed the approval of both councils - as well as affected residents - before they could be adopted, they will now lapse.

Moving from Harewood into Shadwell parish would have meant an increase in council tax of £30 to £50 a year for some affected residents.

Shadwell PC, which was only formed in 2002, had proposed the changes because of ‘anomalies’ in their shared boundaries.

For example, residents living on opposite sides of Holywell Lane, Shadwell are actually in different parishes.

Chairman of Shadwell Parish Council, Debbie Potter, said: “This isn’t a land grab but a sensible boundary change which I think will save the council money in the long run.

“It is not just Shadwell that have proposed boundary changes but a number of parish council’s up and down the country.

“And some of these boundaries have been in place for thousands of years, so they need to be looked at.

“From my understanding of it - by doing them at the same time as the MP’s constituencies, it will save the council money in the long run, which I think is the best way to do it”

Harewood PC has approved the erection of a small sandstone war memorial near a bus shelter on Leeds Road.

At the request of Harewood in Bloom, they will also tidy up this overgrown area and make it more attractive.

The PC will also put up a stone “Wigton Moor” sign on Wigton Lane near the entrance to Alwoodley Golf Club.

The Golf Club has given permission for the use of its land and quotes for the stone will now be obtained.

The local government boundary commision says Leeds City Council has the power to alter or amend boundary changes.

And it has the powers to decide whether to create new parishes, alter them, or whether to group certain parish councils together.