Hebden Bridge firm’s expansion plans get the green light

A firm’s controversial bid to expand its Grade II listed building in Hebden Bridge has been approved.

Calrec Audio Ltd has been given permission to extend to the back of Nutclough Mill on Victoria Road, despite opposition from residents and ward councillors.

Calderdale Council’s planning committee heard the expansion bid and an attached listed building consent application had attracted 49 letters of objection and 14 letters of support.

Those letters included objections from Councillor Nader Fekri (Calder, Lab) and Councillor Dave Young (Calder, Lab), and support from Councillor Janet Battye (Calder, Lib Dem).

The committee heard that Calrec Audio, which designs and makes broadcast audio mixing consoles which are sold around the world, is one of the largest employers in Hebden Bridge, with 146 people working for the company.

The extension would enable the company to employ 24 more people and ensure long-time commitment as an employer in the town. If the company was unable to extend at the site, the committee was told, it may have to look for larger and more appropriate premises elsewhere.Planning officers recommended the application be approved.

But objectors’ had several concerns including about the visual impact of the development and the materials that would be used.

Coun Fekri said he thought the company should come back with a “more appropriate” plan.

Committee member Councillor David Hardy (Elland, Lib Dem) said: “We’re living in difficult times. It would be great to be able to build everything with stone slate roofs but they can’t be found anymore.”