A green space in a West Yorkshire town has been saved from development by local campaigners.

Locals in Yeadon, in the shadow of Leeds-Bradford airport, succeeded in having an open space ruled to be a town green, which means it should not be built on.

Inspector Alun Aylesbury ruled that Yeadon Banks had been used for recreation for 20 years and so could be registered as a green. The Keep Yeadon Banks Green Group (Keybag) campaigned on the issue even after would-be developers fenced off the area.

Kate Ashbrook of the Open Spaces Society said: “The objectors, Leeds Group PLC, who own part of the land, and David Wilson Homes who want to buy the land for development, tried to thwart the application by erecting fences and ‘keep-out’ signs. 

“At that time the law allowed such action to prevent registration as a green.  Fortunately, Leeds City Council, the greens-registration authority, agreed to defer determination of the application until a test case had been heard in the House of Lords.”

That ruling, the Trap Grounds case in Oxford, determined that, provided the use of the land had continued up to the date of the application, the application was valid. Leeds City Council will consider the inspector’s recommendation at its planning meeting on Thursday.

Ms Ashbrook said: “We congratulate [Doug] Jones and Keybag for their persistence and we urge Leeds City Council to rule next week that the land be registered as a green.  It will thus be saved from development and kept green and open for the public to enjoy.”