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News in Kirkburton

Greens call for more cars - for rural Police work

The Green Party wants more cars to be made available for Police Community Support Officers in rural areas in Kirklees.

Currently Police Community Support Officers have to go between quite far flung villages on public transport or by foot. The PCSOs do important reassuring people through their presence in a village, working with community groups and supporting the work of Police Officers.

Kirkburton Green Party Spokesperson Michelle Atkinson said, "This can often mean that PCSOs are spending less time visibly patrolling in the community and more time travelling or waiting for buses. This is particularly an issue when buses miss or in the evenings, or when several different buses are needed to get from one village to another or when there is a limited service. As the PCSOs simply need the vehicle for getting to and from villages and will not be involved in emergencies or hot pursuit the vehicles they use could be low emission or hybrid vehicles with low fuel costs and limited Carbon Dioxide emissions. There are clearly times when we would like Police Community Support Officers to be on public transport when there is an issue of public safety or regular nuisance on buses but where there is not such an issue it is important they are seen on the streets as much as possible."

Kirkburton Green Party Councillor Derek Hardcastle said, "This is clearly an area where the Council and the Police can work effectively together. We both have a role in making people feel more secure. This is an issue that has been raised in meetings that we have had with police. The ward I represent covers everywhere from Farnley Tyas to Flockton and all the villages inbetween. The effectiveness of the Police Community Support Officers would clearly be enhanced by the use of dedicated low emissions cars enabling them to get from one village to another relatively quickly. I and my colleagues have already raised this matter directly with the Police and know that they are giving it serious consideration."

August 2008

Kirkburton Parish Council first to use Parish Renewable Energy Powers

Kirkburton Parish Council has made the short-list of the Big Green Challenge - a prize fund run by NESTA (the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts). If successful in securing a share of the £1million prize money from the Big Green Challenge, the parish council would expand a scheme to make community building more energy efficient and be able to extend support to energy efficiency schemes from local residents.

A motion put to Kirkburton Parish Council in October 2007 was the first in the country to make use of new powers for Parish Councils to promote renewable energy. A little noticed provision of the 2006 Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Act was the new power given to Parish Councils to encourage or promote microgeneration.

There are 10,000 Parish Councils around the country many of whom raise funds for local projects through a precept on the Council Tax. The first Council  to use this power is the Kirkburton Parish Council.

The Green Party are the largest political group on Kirkburton Parish Council with 10 Parish Councillors and they presented a motion to adopt their 9 point Microgeneration Plan on 4 October 2007. A key element of the plan is the provision of £10,000 of Parish Council funds annually to fund the installation of renewable technology and energy
conservation measure in Community Buildings.

It is planned to use this funding to attract additional finance from energy utilities who wish to support community organisations establish small scale renewable energy projects in their area.

The Green Party's Andrew Cooper, the Kirkburton Parish Councillor who proposed the Parish Microgeneration Plan said, "We hope that the Kirkburton Microgeneration Action Plan will be used as a template by thousands of Parish Council's across the country and thereby help make local community centres more sustainable in both financial and environmental terms."

The Kirkburton Parish Microgeneration resolution contains a 9 point plan.

1 - Make a Microgeneration/Energy Conservation Commitment

We make a commitment to promote microgeneration and energy
conservation within our parish boundaries with a particular focus on community buildings, businesses and private householders.

2 - Provide a training session for Parish Councillors

All Councillors will have the opportunity to attend a session on microgeneration which explains the technologies what they do, their advantages and disadvantages. This will be at nil cost to the Council.

3- Establish a Parish Microgeneration Champion(s)

Ensuring the Parish Councils support for Microgeneration is being driven is important. We will establish a small sub committee or an identified individual who has a specific remit to realise the Parish Council's Microgeneration Commitment.

4 - Establish a Microgeneration/Energy Conservation Fund for Community Buildings.
The Parish will establish an annual budget to invest in
microgeneration and basic energy conservation measures in community buildings such
as village halls. By investing in basic energy saving measures the fund will ensure that a greater proportion of a buildings total energy use is served by microgeneration and also to demonstrate even greater energy savings, reduced CO2 emissions and lower fuel bills. A key aim for the fund would be to seek external funding to complement and maximise the Parish Councils Commitment to Microgeneration. This fund will receive a budget from the Parish Council of £10,000/year.

5 - Promote national and local  schemes to local people

The Low Carbon Buildings Programme offers grants to organisations, businesses and households installing approved microgeneration technologies in homes and other buildings.  The Parish Council will promote this and similar schemes through existing community

6 - Influence Planning Policies

Kirkburton Parish Council actively monitors and comments on Planning Applications within our boundaries. We will provide informed support to microgeneration applications within our
boundaries providing they have no significant negative impact.

7 - Make links to Kirklees Metropolitan Council
Kirkburton Parish Council will ensure that appropriate officers and Councillors in Kirklees are aware of the commitment being developed for Microgeneration to ensure that the assistance and expertise that may be available is fully utilised.

8 - Make links to Kirklees Neighbourhood Housing and Housing Associations
Kirkburton Parish Council will seek to establish a partnership with Registered Social Landlords, Councils and Arms Length Management Organisations with housing stock in their area. By making them aware of Kirkburton Parish Council's commitment we will seek to influence their investment decisions to encourage the installation of renewable
energy technologies. This could be promoted as a particularly cost effective option in parts of the Parish that are off the gas network.

9 - Promote our policy in the local media
The Parish Council will raise peoples awareness of small scale renewable energy through their own publications or through other media such as newspapers that are distributed in the area.

Contact Andrew Cooper - 07721 348619

Relevant Section of the Climate Change and Sustainablility Act 2006
20:Parish councils and community councils: powers in relation to local energy saving measures
(1) A parish council or community council may encourage or promote any of the following-

(a) microgeneration within their area;
(b) the use within their area of electricity generated, or heat produced, by microgeneration;
(c) efficiency in the use, by persons in their area, of electricity, heat, gas, fuel and other descriptions or sources of energy;

(d) reductions in the amounts of such energy, or sources of energy, used by persons in their area;
(e) production in their area of- (i) biomass, or (ii) any fuel derived from biomass;
(f) use in their area of, or of electricity generated, or heat produced, from biomass or any such fuel.

(2) The power conferred by subsection (1) includes, in particular, power-
(a) on application, to provide information about goods or services available within their area (whether offered or provided by public authorities or by any other persons), or
(b) to provide advice or assistance, for the purpose of encouraging or facilitating any of the matters mentioned in that subsection. Rest of section makes this subject to Section 137 spending limits.


Derek Hardcastle: Kirkburton's first Green on Kirklees Council


In the May 2007 Kirklees Elections Derek Hardcastle won the Kirkburton Ward for the first time with a strong 453 majority convicingly beating the sitting Conservative Councillor . This result has been a long time coming with Derek missing victory in the previous 3 elections by less than a 100 votes.

Derek Hardcastle lives on Penistone Road, Kirkburton and has lived in the area for over 40 years. He is married to Jill and they have three children Jessica, Joshua and Josephine who have all been educated at local schools. Derek has been the Green Party Candidate for the Kirkburton Ward for the last six years and has taken the Greens from fourth place to a hard earned and well deserved victory. He was also re-elected to Kirkburton Parish Council in May and now leads the Green Party group of 11 Parish Councillors. Derek is a professionally qualified financial advisor and works in Leeds.

Email Derek Hardcastle

How you voted in Kirkburton 2007


Your Green Parish Councillors





Michelle was born in Shepley and, after spells away volunteering overseas and working in Leeds and London, returned to live in Shepley. She has a 12 year old son who attends Scissett Middle School. Michelle, who was recently co-opted onto the parish council for the Kirkburton/Highburton seat, works as a Senior Manager in a school in Barnsley, responsible for implementing ICT projects. She has always been concerned about the sustainability of the way we live, and aims to help keep our green spaces, get children more involved in community projects and encourage people to live greener lifestyles. She hopes to represent the electorate effectively and help make the ward an even better and greener place to live.



Geof is a former Chairman of Kirkburton Parish Council and was a Kirkburton Parish Councillor between 1987 and 1999. He was a founder member of the Environment Committee on the Parish Council and has a particular concern in countryside management matters. He has lived in the Kirkburton Parish for the past 26 years and now lives in Kirkburton with his wife Christine and son David. He is a retired Art teacher and still paints and sculpts.



Brian is married with 2 children and has lived in Kirkburton for 28 years. He is the Commercial Director of a demolition company and has in the past served as a School Governor for 4 years . He has a particular concern about protecting green space from development and wants to ensure that open space locally is preserved for everyone to enjoy.

Mobile – 07765 230401



John has lived in Highburton for the last 13 years and owns a brokerage business in Milnsbridge. Prior to that he was in the army for over 26 years where he rose to the rank of Captain. John’s main concern is for young people in the village who have nothing to do in the area and nowhere to go. He also believes that education is the key to tackling drugs issues. “making drugs illegal is not enough, kids are inquisitive and we need to show them honestly what impact drug use has on their health. Home - 01484 317684



Derek Hardcastle lives on Penistone Road, Kirkburton and has lived in the area for over 40 years. He is married to Jill and they have three children Jessica, Joshua and Josephine who have all been educated at local schools. In May 2007 Derek was elected to Kirklees Council for the first time as well as being re-elected to the Parish Council on which he has served for four years and on which he now leads the Green Party group of 11 Parish Councillors. Derek is a professionally qualified financial advisor and works in Leeds.
Home  - 01484 320676 Mobile  - 07779 628147

Email –



I was elected as a Green Party Parish Councillor for the Lepton area 4 years ago and have lived in the village for 26 years. I have been a Governor on the Church School for the last 21 years, most of them as Chairman.  Before I retired I went to work each day by bicycle. I still cycle, usually attending parish council meetings by bike. We must keep activities running in the village if we are to retain the village atmosphere now that Lepton is physically joined to Huddersfield by the housing in the quarry.

Home: 01484 602499



I am aged 44, am married  with one son and have lived in Lepton for the past 23 years. I have been a Parish Councillor for the past 12 years and am a  former Chairman of the Parish Council.

I have worked hard on behalf of Kirkburton Parish Council and the local community. I am a member of Lepton Methodist Church and Lepton Community Link. I am a Heating Engineer and my hobbies are hiking, cycling and allotment holding.
Home: 01484 316492
Mobile: 07753 577007



I live on Rowley Lane and own my own catering business in Bradford and this will be the first time I have stood in a local election.
I have lived in Lepton for over 10 years now and my main concern locally is the lack of challenging activity for young people to get involved in. Getting free activity for young people that is stimulating, motivational and interesting is the best way of ensuring that they don’t get involved in more anti social activities. Another big concern I have is the need to oppose to development on green space. Once an area is built on it is lost forever. Getting more empty homes back into use and developing brownfield land should take priority.

Mobile: 07866 909706




Robert is a local farmer and was born, lives and works in Farnley Tyas. He is married to Maureen and  has two grown up children.Robert is presently Group chairman of Honley & District NFU (National Farmers’ Union) with interests in environmental issues and reform of the Common Agricultural Policy. He has worked on the EU project, ‘Sustainable Open Space’  which shares ideas and good practice across NW Europe on the development  of ‘open space entrepreneurship’ on the urban fringe. He also works to identify and develop systems that encourage small/medium producers to re-engage with their market in a sustainable and energy efficient way.

Phone: 01484 664826                                               Mobile: 07778 315577                                           e-email:



Andrew lives in Brockholes just a few hundred yards outside the parish boundary. He is married with 2 young children. He is already a Kirklees Councillor and the chances are that if you have ever had a Green Party leaflet through your door then he may have delivered it.

In his working life he develops sustainable energy projects and has found millions of pounds worth of funding from a variety of sources to support projects he has initiated to finance energy saving and renewable energy projects.

He was first elected to Kirklees Council in 1999 and was responsible for housing on the Kirklees Cabinet for 3 years. Recently he was responsible for developing the project which will provide free insulation to every home in Kirklees over the next 3 years.

Phone 01484 667519    Mobile 07721 348619




Adrian Cruden is the Green Party’s Parish Council Candidate for the Grange Moor and Little Lepton area. Adrian is married, lives in Thornhill and works as a Personnel Manager for a well known national charity. Adrian has taken up a number of casework issues in the Grange Moor area.
Mobile – 07812 187524



Kirkburton Parish Council Meetings


Kirkburton Parish Council meets at 7.30 p.m, Burton Village Hall on the first Thursday of the month (with the exception of August). Before each Parish Council meeting there is a 15-minute interval for public questions. Meetings are open to the public unless otherwise stated.

For information on the Council website click here

For councillor contact details click here.














Solar panels for Burton Village Hall blocked by Conservatives - 11th March 2006
Derek Hardcastle

Derek Hardcastle reports on the recent attempt ot get solar panels installed on the roof of Burton Village Hall at Highburton.

Politics at its best can make a positive difference to peoples lives and the local environment at its worst it stifles progress and adds nothing to the local community. I have seen both of these approaches to politics over the last few years but unfortunately the saga of funding solar panels for village halls belongs in the latter category.

Earlier this year the Kirklees Renewable Energy Officer came to speak to the Parish Council to talk about small scale renewable energy (not whacking great wind turbines). I think it is fair to say she received a universally positive response across the Parties. At the last Parish Council meeting Kirkburton and Highburton Community Association came to the Parish Council requesting funds with a properly costed proposal for the installation of solar panels, to produce electricity, on Burton Village Hall.

I believed it would be positively received indeed reading the comments from the local Conservative Parish Councillor in your last Newsletter I believed it was almost a certainty. Unfortunately just over half the Councillors present were not in favour, (including all the
Conservatives) so the proposal fell. On the face of it those opposing had a point. They said that the amount of time it would take to pay back the investment in the panels would take a number of years and there were other ways of saving energy that were more cost effective. There is a lot more to this issue than this rather simple argument.

We all know that energy prices are rising rapidly so what is economic today could be very different in just a few years time. We also know that our energy sources are increasingly reliant on gas from abroad and that there is a limited amount of uranium in the world to generate nuclear power. To deal with the waste from existing nuclear power stations in Britain will cost £85 Billion and these very power stations are very vulnerable to terrorist attack with potentially devastating consequences.

We have to start thinking about new ways of generating more energy locally to ensure communities have more independent power supplies. Of course some people don't like large wind turbines and if we are not to build those what choices are we left with? A study by the Energy Saving Trust commissioned by the Government showed that up to 40% of energy could be generated locally on or near to buildings from solar, small scale wind, micro hydro and by heat pumps. Of course the word 'could' is important. Sticking a few solar panels on a Village Hall is not going to save the world but we do need to start somewhere and in the early stages of any new technology prices are high. In the case of the proposal for Kirkburton Village Hall what has to borne in mind is that the solar panels actually provide a payback of around £200/year there are many things the parish Council and Kirklees funds which produce no revenue and indeed have high annual maintenance costs so if we made all our decisions on investment on the amount of money we got back we would fund hardly and play areas, no footpaths and certainly no more libraries.

On the positive side within a couple of years all new buildings, in sizeable developments will have to generate at least 10% of their energy from on site renewable sources. This has been specified in the new Regional Spatial Strategy that is going to influence all Council's Planning Regulations across the Yorkshire and Humber region. In Kirklees the Council has set itself a target of 30% of energy to be generated on site from renewable sources and it has financially justified this on the basis of the money it will save the Council (and the Council Tax Payer) over the next 25 years.

With the threat to our environment and the need for independent and secure energy supplies the question really is "Can we afford not to invest in renewable energy on buildings?"


Derek Hardcastle

The Manse, 95 Penistone Road, Kirkburton, Huddersfield HD8 0LF
Green Party Candidate

01484 320676 Home

07779 628147 - Mobile


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Broken wall and bench mended- January 18th 2006

Two more issues raised by Derek Hardcastle and the Green Party team have been resolved. The broken wall at the electricity sub station on Stocks Way has now been repaired and the pavement seat outside the shops has been mended. " Actually the wood is now attached to the metal frame but the frame itself is still not very secure but we will pursue this." Said Derek Hardacastle


Notice this notice-board and you'll notice its not worth noticing! -17th January 2006

Green Parish Councillor Derek Hardcastle calls for an end to Conservative propaganda costing £3500 of public money. Read More


Planned Green boost for Christmas bus services 2006

After this years successful service includingly the newly added route from Shepley via Kirkburton to Huddersfield Town Centre Kirklees Greens have made a commitment to scale up their volunteer bus services next year. The Green Party has now run the volunteer bus service from Berry Brow to Huddersfield and on to the Royal Infirmary for the last 12 years.

Money for the living as well as the dead - December 2005 Green Party Parish Councillors are pressing Kirklees to resolve the 30 year issue of who owns Kirkheaton Church Graveyard. Read More


Use this link for contact details for your Kirkburton Parish Councillors.



Join the Green Party team in making our area a better place to live.

There is always plenty of work to do in the Green Party team and together we can make this community stronger and better represented. Through energetic activities like community clean ups to leaflet delivery, or simply displaying posters at election time you can help get the Green message to thousands of people. If you can offer assistance or would like a poster board for your garden please call Derek Hardcastle on (01484) 320676 or mobile 07779 628147.


Shepley Library 'Saved'! - 18th January 2006

Shepley library

After press reports that Shepley Library was under threat of closure or 'not reopening' Derek Hardcastle attended the last Full Kirklees Council meeting on Wednesday January 18th to question the responsible Cabinet Member John Smithson. At the meeting Derek received assurances there are no plans to discontinue the refurbishment of the Library and indeed it is to be upgraded to a 'one stop shop' for Council Services.

Meanwhile the Library is temporarily based at St Paul's Church Hall on Marsh Lane until the Library Building proper reopens.

Derek said, "I thought it was important to go to the Kirklees Council meeting and get first hand facts about what was actually going on with the Library instead of the rumours flying around in the press which have distressed Shepley citizens."

"Nearly 6000 people a year use the Shepley Library the refurbishment and more useful local information about services that matter should make it a useful link for local people with the Council."

Current opening times of the Library at St Paul's Church Hall are:

Monday: 10am - 1pm. 2pm - 5pm.
Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday: Closed
Thursday: 10am - 1pm, 2pm - 5pm.
Friday: 10am - 1pm, 2pm - 5pm.
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed

Shepley Library can be contacted on 07970 895361 or email through this link


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Money for the living as well as the dead - December 2005

Green Party Parish Councillors of Kirkburton are pressing Kirklees to resolve the 30 year issue of who owns Kirkheaton Church Graveyard. When Kirklees Council was created in 1974 an administrative mix up led to responsibility for the upkeep and maintenance of Kirkheaton Graveyard not being transferred to Kirklees Council.

Whilst bizarrely one section of the graveyard wall is owned and maintained by Kirklees the vast majority isn't, landing the costly responsibility for maintenance with Kirkburton Parish Council. The Parish Council are faced annually with spending over a third of its small annual budget on maintaining perimeter walls and general upkeep.

Derek Hardcastle, Leader of the Greens on Kirkburton Parish Council, said,

"We want Kirklees to take over responsibility for maintenance of the Kirkheaton graveyard. It is clearly wrong that householders from as far afield as Flockton, Shelley and Shepley should have their funding for parish activities spent in one small part of one community due an error made by officials over 30 years ago. Sorting this matter out would not affect the Council Tax people pay one bit but it would enable small scale local projects to be spread more evenly across the widespread area covered by Kirkburton Parish Council."

Green Party Parish Councillors have sent in a petition to Kirklees via Green Councillor Andrew Cooper calling on the Cabinet Committee with responsibility for this matter to see the matter resolved.

"30 years is too long for a matter like this to be in the 'too difficult' pile," said Derek Hardcastle.


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