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East of Otley Exemplar


The East of Otley site has been allocated for housing for over three decades now and development on the site was recently supported by the local community in the Otley Neighbourhood Plan

Otley 2030 recognises the shortage of affordable housing and amenities for residents of Otley, but since this site was allocated, all levels of government have declared climate emergencies, so it is imperative that whatever is built on the site recognises we are facing climate and wildlife crises. The plan that was rushed out in early 2021 by the consortium (including both the developers and Leeds City Council) completely ignored these facts. We, therefore, thought it was important to do the following:

  1. Forensically investigate the OEC (Otley East Consortium) plan and present the local community with the best evidence on all aspects of the development. We did this by creating the East of Otley Action Group, which ultimately helped garner close to a thousand objections to the development. This has resulted in the plan being put into stasis for the time being, as LCC investigates the viability of detaching the development of the road from the housing.

  2. Come up with an alternative exemplar development that used best practice to create a plan that provided affordable homes, increased biodiversity within the site, improved amenities for the benefit of current residents as well as new, and created a 15 minute neighbourhood where residents will not have to rely on a car.

Below you will see a map of the latest draft proposal and further down the page is a link to the development principles that we believe should form the core of any development - this document was designed by University of Leeds Masters student, Natalie Rea, as part of her dissertation. You will also find a video link to the DEVX conference at which we recently presented.

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What's next?

  • Volunteers - We need local people to get involved to help us research, engage, and design.

  • Engagement - We want to engage as much of the community as possible - we need volunteers to help us do this

  • Finance - Find sources of finance to turn our drafts into realistic proposals.

  • Authorities - Engage the local authorities further to encourage them to change the way they think about designing these large developments.

  • Expertise - We need ecologists, architects, builders, engineers etc to get on board and help us to design this plan.

If you would like to get involved, please send us an email

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