'Cycle path will create more anti-social behaviour'

RESIDENTS in Greetland fear a proposed viaduct pathway will encourage more anti-social behaviour in the area.

They told council highways engineer Richard Binks they were worried a path running along West Vale viaduct would "increase the youth nuisance, anti-social behaviour and damage".

Mr Binks said the path would encourage people to walk or cycle instead of getting in the car.

He said: "I can't believe that his is the only community in the entire country that doesn't want this scheme."

Residents raised concerns over safety, anti-social behaviour and maintenance of the site at a public meeting in St Patrick's Catholic Primary School, Hullen Edge Road, West Vale.

Craig Bottomley, of Bankfield Grange, said: "I have been a Greetland resident for 39 years and there is no way in this world I would let my children walk near that viaduct.

"I have had a car damaged because of people throwing things from it."

Helen Woodworth, of Bankfield Grange, said: "Anyone that lets their children go there is foolish."

Graham Bateman, owner of Bateman Fabrications, said stones were regularly thrown through his window from the viaduct.

If approved the path will form part of a two-phase project, which includes a cycle network throughout Calderdale.Cyclists have welcomed the scheme.

Colin Gabbitas, from Greetland, said: "There are so many dangers on the roads and this is one way of going around them."

Richard Carney, of Saddleworth Road, said: "I think this is absolutely fantastic. This is brilliant and will bring something special to the area.

"We should do something to get rid of the problems."

Original plans for the grade II-listed viaduct were refused earlier in the year after concerns a new path would affect wildlife.