Bits of Cookie policy

IP addresses and cookies

We may collect information about your computer, including where available your IP address, operating system and browser type, for system administration. This is statistical data about our users’ browsing actions and patterns, and does not identify any individual.

For the same reason, we may obtain information about your general internet usage by using a cookie file which is stored on the hard drive of your computer. Cookies contain information that is transferred to your computer’s hard drive.

You may refuse to accept cookies by activating the setting on your browser which allows you to refuse the setting of cookies. However, if you select this setting you may be unable to access certain parts of the Site. Unless you have adjusted your browser setting so that it will refuse cookies, our system will issue cookies when you log on to the Site.

In addition to cookies, ChaCo records the activity of users signed in to our website in order to help us improve your user experience and provide you with support.

What types of cookie are there and which ones do we use?

There are two types of cookie:

  • Persistent cookies remain on a user’s device for a set period of time specified in the cookie. They are activated each time that the user visits the website that created that particular cookie.
  • Session cookies are temporary. They allow website operators to link the actions of a user during a browser session. A browser session starts when a user opens the browser window and finishes when they close the browser window. Once you close the browser, all session cookies are deleted.

Cookies also have, broadly speaking, four different functions and can be categorised as follow: ‘strictly necessary’ cookies, ‘performance’ cookies, ‘functionality’ cookies and ‘targeting’ or ‘advertising’ cookies.

Strictly necessary cookies are essential to navigate around a website and use its features. Without them, you wouldn’t be able to use basic services like registration. These cookies do not gather information about you that could be used for marketing or remembering where you’ve been on the internet.

Examples of how we use ‘strictly necessary’ cookies include:

  • Setting unique identifiers for each unique visitor, so site numbers can be analysed.
  • Allowing you to sign in to the ChaCo website as a registered user.

Performance cookies collect data for statistical purposes on how visitors use a website, they don’t contain personal information such as names and email addresses, and are used to improve your user experience of a website.

Here are some examples of how we use performance cookies:

  • Gathering data about visits to the website, including numbers of visitors and visits, length of time spent on the site, pages clicked on or where visitors have come from.

Information supplied by performance cookies helps us to understand how you use the website; for example, whether or not you have visited before, what you looked at or clicked on and how you found us. We can then use this data to help improve our services. We generally use independent analytics companies to perform these services for us and when this is the case, these cookies may be set by a third party company (third party cookies).

If you have registered with the website we can combine the data from the web analytics services and their cookies with the information you have supplied to us, so that we can make your experience more personal by recommending certain articles to you based on your reading behaviour or tailoring your emails with content you might find more interesting. We would only do this if you have given us permission to communicate with you. Sometimes the data used from the web analytics companies has been collected before you registered or signed in. In these cases, if we use this data to identify you, we use it only in accordance with our privacy notice.

Functionality cookies allow users to customise how a website looks for them: they can remember usernames, language preferences and regions, and can be used to provide more personal services like local weather reports and traffic news.

Here are some examples of how we use functionality cookies:

  • Storing your user preferences on Your Account page
  • Remembering if you’ve been to the site before so that messages intended for first-time users are not displayed to you.

Advertising and targeting cookies – ChaCo does not use any of these.

How do I control my cookies?

You should be aware that any preferences will be lost if you delete all cookies and many websites will not work properly or you will lose some functionality. We do not recommend turning cookies off when using our website for these reasons.

Most browsers accept cookies automatically, but you can alter the settings of your browser to erase cookies or prevent automatic acceptance if you prefer. Generally you have the option to see what cookies you’ve got and delete them individually, block third party cookies or cookies from particular sites, accept all cookies, to be notified when a cookie is issued or reject all cookies. Visit the ‘options’ or ‘preferences’ menu on your browser to change settings, and check the following links for more browser-specific information.

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This site uses cookies. Cookies are small files stored by your browser to help improve your user experience and to provide anonymised tracking information to third parties such as Google Analytics. Here is a list of all the cookies we use:

Privacy policy

ChaCo is committed to protecting your data and your privacy. We aim to ensure that any information you give us is held securely and safely.

Please read this policy carefully to understand how we collect, use and store your personal information.

Chapeltown Cohousing Ltd – aka ChaCo – is a not-for-profit housing cooperative registered with the Industrial and Provident Society, number 29376R

ChaCo holds and processes personal details in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulations.

If you have any questions about this policy or how your data is handled, please write to:

Data Protection
Chapeltown Cohousing Ltd
115 Spencer Place


Data protection

ChaCo takes data protection very seriously.

As you use our website, get in touch with us, or take part in our activities, we collect information. This deepens our understanding of what you are interested in and helps us to improve the quality and relevance of all of our communications with supporters and members.

ChaCo will never share your information with another organisation for their own marketing purposes and we will never sell your information for any reason whatsoever.

We do however need to collect and use your personal information for carefully considered and legitimate business purposes, which will help to ensure that we can run ChaCo effectively.

This policy will set out what data we collect, how we will use it, what the legal basis for this is, and outline what your rights are in respect of your personal data.

How do we process your personal data?

ChaCo attempts to comply with its obligations under the GDPR by keeping personal data up to date; by storing and destroying it securely; by not collecting or retaining excessive amounts of data; by protecting personal data from loss, misuse, unauthorised access and disclosure and by ensuring that appropriate technical measures are in place to protect personal data.

Depending on the nature of your relationship with ChaCo (eg: Friend, investor, volunteer, Prospective Member, Full Member), our use of your personal data might include the following purposes:

  • To enable us to contact you
  • To enable us to keep you informed
  • To keep track of how you wish to engage with ChaCo and to enable you to do so
  • To enable us to administer any loanstock investment
  • To aid communication within ChaCo
  • To know whether you help us meet our allocations criteria
  • To enable us to keep track of our overall allocations targets
  • To enable us to monitor your progress towards Full Membership
  • To help you fulfill your obligations as a Prospective Member or Full Member
  • To maintain accurate accounts
  • To maintain accurate accounts

Lawful processing

ChaCo, like all organisations in the UK, needs a lawful basis to collect and use your personal data. The law allows for six legitimate purposes which organisations can rely on to legally process people’s personal data. Of these, only three are relevant to ChaCo:

  • Information is processed on the basis of an individual’s consent.
  • Information is processed in line with a contractual relationship.
  • Information is processed on it being a legitimate interest for ChaCo to do so.

Most of our processing of your data is done on the basis of our legitimate interests which are listed in the next section.

For Full and Prospective Members however, some of our data processing relates specifically to the provision of housing and is thus done on the basis of the corresponding contractual relationship.

Additionally, we may occasionally ask for your consent to process your data for a specific purpose. Where you give us consent to process your data we will always keep a clear record of how and when this consent was obtained, and you can withdraw this consent at any time by contacting

We may also share your personal information when we are compelled to do so by a legal authority acting in compliance with the law.

Legitimate interests

The law allows personal data to be legally collected and used by an organisation if it is necessary for a legitimate business interest of the organisation – as long as its use is fair and balanced and does not unduly impact the rights of the individual concerned.


  • Delivery of our co-operative purposes as set out in the Fully Mutual Rules of Chapeltown Cohousing Ltd.
  • Reporting criminal acts and compliance with the legal instructions of law enforcement agencies.
  • Internal and external audit for financial or regulatory compliance purpose.
  • Statutory reporting.


  • Conventional direct marketing by direct mail and other forms or marketing, publicity or advertisement.
  • Unsolicited commercial or non-commercial messages, including recruitment of potential members or investors, awareness-raising.
  • Personalisation to tailor and enhance the recipient experience in our digital and postal communications.
  • Analysis, targeting and segmentation to improve communication efficiency.
  • Processing for research purposes.

Operational management:

  • Member and supporter recording and monitoring for recruitment, or administration purposes.
  • Provision and administration of member benefits such as repairs.
  • Physical security, IT and network security.
  • Processing for historical, research or statistical purposes.

Financial management and control

  • Processing of financial transactions and maintaining financial controls.
  • Prevention of fraud, misuse of services, or money laundering.
  • Enforcement of legal claims.

Purely administrative purposes

  • Responding to any solicited enquiry from any of our stakeholders.
  • Delivery of requested resources or information.
  • Administration of existing financial transactions.
  • Providing ‘thank you’ communications and receipts.

When we use your personal information, we will always consider if it is fair and balanced to do so and whether it would be within your reasonable expectations that we would use your data in this way.

We will balance your rights and our legitimate interests to ensure that the way in which we use your data never goes beyond what you would expect and is not unduly intrusive or unfair.

Sensitive personal information

Under data protection law, certain categories of personal information are recognised as sensitive, including health information, race, religious beliefs, and political opinions (‘sensitive personal data’). If you express an interest in joining ChaCo, we may collect sensitive personal data about you.

We would only collect sensitive personal data where there is a clear reason for doing so – eg: in order to understand whether a potential resident helps us to meet our various allocation targets, or to record whether they have particular needs that ChaCo should be aware of.

We will only use sensitive information provided to us for the purpose it is provided.

Sharing your personal data

Your personal data will be treated as strictly confidential, and will normally be shared only with the other members of ChaCo and only so far as is necessary for the smooth running of the organisation. We will only share your personal data with third parties outside of ChaCo with your consent. We may share aggregated statistical data on a wider basis.

These are assurances that every ChaCo member has an obligation to help fulfill. For example, if you print out a list of member contact details, you have a responsibility not to allow others access to that data: it must be treated as confidential.

How long do we keep your personal data?

We will try to keep your personal data for no longer than reasonably necessary. There is a legal requirement to keep accounting information for a minimum period of six years. We may also retain your data for longer periods in case of any legal claims/complaints.

Your rights and your personal data

Unless subject to an exemption under the GDPR, you have the following rights with respect to your personal data:

  • The right to request a copy of your personal data which ChaCo holds about you;
  • The right to request that ChaCo corrects any personal data if it is found to be inaccurate or out of date;
  • The right to request your personal data is erased where it is no longer necessary for ChaCo to retain such data;
  • The right to withdraw your consent to the processing at any time for situations where ChaCo has previously requested it as a processing condition;
  • The right, where there is a dispute in relation to the accuracy or processing of your personal data, to request a restriction is placed on further processing;
  • The right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioners Office.

Further processing

If we wish to use your personal data for a new purpose, not covered by this Data Protection Notice, then we will provide you with a new notice explaining this new use prior to commencing the processing and setting out the relevant purposes and processing conditions. Where and whenever necessary, we will seek your prior consent to the new processing.

Contact details

To exercise all relevant rights, queries or complaints please in the first instance contact ChaCo by emailing

You can contact the Information Commissioners Office on 0303 123 1113 or via email or at the Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire. SK9 5AF.

Petition against Dixons' planning application

Download our petition sheet about the dodgy proposals for the new Dixons Trinity Chapeltown academy.

You can find out more about their plans on this page.

Guidelines on objecting to the new school proposals

This document was prepared by Mark to act as a guide to object to planning proposal to build a combined primary & secondary school (circa 1,000+ people, pupils & staff) in a single huge building right next to ChaCo.

You probably need to read this page first.

General consensus from ChaCo members:

Though ChaCo is supportive of the building of new primary and secondary schools for Chapeltown, this application is not acceptable and we should rally to protest against the proposal. We believe the fairer and right approach for a primary and secondary school is the one we were originally informed of, which was the primary school on the land behind us and the secondary on the other side of Barrack road.

It is essential that everyone in ChaCo objects to this planning application

The closing date for registering objections is 1st June. There are no rights of appeal for third parties who are unhappy with a planning decision. In other words, if the planning decision after the 1st of June is to approve there is nothing we can do.

This document is in place to help us consider relevant points when submitting an objection letter to the planning committee. It is important to emphasize this is just a guide and any points you want to raise that aren’t covered in this document, do raise them in your objection letter.

Important considerations

Our immediate concern is to stop the current plan being approved and we should do all we can in the short timeframe we have available to emphasise our case. There are legitimate concerns with the current plan (ie. privacy, massing ,light reduction, green space, noise, traffic etc) which we need to highlight, however should the first application be refused by the planners, Dixons will take the recommendations into account and submit a second plan. It is very important we anticipate this second plan, it could be similar to the current plan with a few tweaks to reduce overlooking etc, however it could still have a devastating effect on ChaCo.

A good outcome for ChaCo is if Dixons resubmit a design that is more in keeping with their original proposal of having the Primary school on the ChaCo side of Barrack Road and the secondary on the other side of Barrack Road.

It would be useful if we could make this a key narrative of our objections so there is consistency between our objections to this plan and a resubmitted plan that falls short of separating the two schools.

How to register objections

There are two ways detailed by Leeds of commenting on this application

Via the Leeds council public access website

  • You will need to register on this website
  • Search for application reference 18/02283
  • Click make a comment and select object, support or neutral.

In writing

  • Send letter to- Planning Services, The Leonardo Building, 2 Rossington Street, Leeds, LS2 8HD
  • Quote application ref. 18/02283
  • Add your comments and include your name and address

Via email

Note this method is not documented in the planning website but they do seem to be accepting comments submitted by email.

  • Email to:
  • Subject: 18/02283
  • Add your comments in the body of the email including your name and address

Writing your objection letter

It could be useful to break your letter into 3 segments: Opening, Body and Conclusion


  • State this letter is an objection to the proposal.
  • Code and description of relevant proposal:

    18/02283/FU Demolition of vacant depot building; construction of a new primary/secondary school; multi-use game areas (MUGA), sports pitches, hard and soft landscaping, car/cycle parking, alterations to site access; landscaping and boundary treatments | Dixons Trinity Chapeltown Leopold Street Chapeltown Leeds LS7 4AW

  • Who you are. If you are a Full Member or Prospective Member of ChaCo it is important that you state this so the council will treat your objection as a local resident.


List your points of objection in order, starting with the strongest first, and explain the reason for each objection. (see below for details)


This could be a suitable place to conclude that squeezing both primary and secondary schools into one site alongside residential properties is not appropriate (not just for ChaCo but the area in general) and a better solution would be to revert to the original plan (with secondary school other side of Barrack Road).

What will the planners consider?

The planners will only consider certain factors when reviewing objections to an application. It would be useful to understand what those factors are and ensure as much as we can what we write is relevant to the planners.

Ie: factors like visual impact, effect on the character of a neighbourhood, possible noise and disturbance, overlooking and loss of privacy. The likely effect of the development on the residential amenity of neighbours is clearly an important consideration. On the other hand, a possibly adverse impact on property values is not a relevant planning consideration, and so there is no point in mentioning it.

In writing a letter of objection to a planning application, the biggest mistake can be making your letter too personal. I totally understand the temptation when you feel so outraged and fearful about the proposal. But you only weaken your case if you include points that bear no relevance to the planning guidelines that planners will weigh the proposal against.

Your objection will have more effect if a number of people write in to object: avoid using a ‘standard’ letter. Objectors should use their own words and write, type or word process their letters themselves. Objections will not carry the same weight if they are seen to have been written or produced in a standardised form.

These guidelines are taken from the Leeds planning website and elaborated with explanations from other areas. Comments have also been added to some of the areas that are specifically relevant to school application and its relevance to Chaco.

These are just general guidelines and each objection is unique. If, having read through this document, you feel there is something relevant not included in this document, do include it in your objection.

It should be noted that any objection to the planning application will be public, including who submitted it. Bear this in mind when filling out objections as we need to ensure we are viewed in a positive light by the community.

What should I comment on?

Design, appearance and layout

Design (including bulk and massing, detailing and materials is nowadays recognised as an important factor in the acceptability of a development proposal. If you think the development looks ugly, then you should say so, especially if it is over-bearing, out-of-scale or out of character in terms of its appearance compared with existing development in the vicinity.
Massing. Buildings should be in keeping with the general in bulk /size with its neighbours. Ie. It would be inappropriate to build a 4 storey house in the middle of an estate full of bungalows.

  • There will be a single large building with one end next to the end house in ChaCo
  • The proposed single building is huge compared to ChaCo.
  • Its roof is estimated to be 9m higher than the eaves to the house nearest it
  • The building is situated very close to ChaCo
  • The school is on higher land than ChaCo.

All these factors contribute to an overbearing building towering over ChaCo. As Justin stated, it would make ChaCo look like toytown in comparison.


The application has the primary school’s playground running alongside the boundary between Chaco and the school. The application states:

Along the southern boundary a 6m wide tree and shrub planting strip is proposed to provide a visual buffer between the new school site and the adjacent new housing site. The ground in this zone also drops significantly to tie into the site boundary level.

The primary school’s playground is easily the noisiest external space in the school. Though no one will argue against a school having a playground, locating it next to the only residential neighbours is inconsiderate.

ChaCo have designed their buildings to form a protection against the traffic noise any noise generated from the playground will have a significant impact on the quality of life in Chaco.
The planners may make allowance for the fact the noise is limited to certain times of the school day. However that is still a significant amount of time, including morning drop-off, morning break, lunch, afternoon break and afternoon pick-up and the resulting noise will have significant impact on the quality of life for those residents.

Without a very thorough sound assessment it is very doubtful installing buffers / soundproofing along the boundaries will be very effective especially considering the playground will be on higher ground than ChaCo. (ie: huge wall needed to be effective).

Impact on highway safety and traffic

Concerns about highway safety may also be raised, but it should be borne in mind that such issues are subject to careful technical examination by qualified engineers employed by the highway authority, and so objections based on road safety fears are unlikely to carry much weight unless it is also the independent view of the Council’s own highway engineers that the development would adversely affect highway safety or the convenience of road users.

Having one main dropping point for both the primary and secondary school, will generate a huge amount of traffic particularly along Leopold street.

A recent meeting of Chapeltown Citizens asked Cllr Rafique to raise school drop-off and traffic issues near Holy Rosary Primary School. This proposal will only exacerbate this concern. The parking survey that justifies the increase in traffic has included parking spaces available that are already used as pick-up/drop-off points by Holy Rosary School.

The transport document provided by Dixon’s is confusing as it bases the requirement on there being 420 pupils where the ACTUAL number of pupils is 980 !!!

Further, the school is split over two sites. Having children frequently having to cross a very busy road (Barrack Road) to get to some of its facilities feels like a very dangerous thing to do.

Note: Staff car parking is going to be on the other side of Barrack Road, so our main concern here is dropping off / picking up.

Privacy and overlooking

This is probably the biggest impact /concern for ChaCo. We have right to privacy, both in our houses and in personal/private outside space (like external seating).

There is extensive overlooking by the 3-storey building situated very close to ChaCo houses. Not only is the building a very high 3-storey building, it is already sitting on elevated land compared to ChaCo. Secondary school pupils and teachers will be able to look directly into resident’s bedrooms, kitchens and living rooms – as well as their front doors and activity in their gardens, including external seating areas. This will have a huge impact on how residents feel and behave, not only in the gardens but inside their houses too. Some people will feel very vulnerable in this situation – including young children.

The planting of trees to provide privacy is not a viable solution to provide immediate/permanent/year-round privacy.

Effect on sunlight

Planners are concerned only with whether a development would lead to an unacceptable loss of light (both sunlight and daylight).

Justin has estimated that in midsummer the shadow from the school will first hit our land (including the growing areas) at 3:00pm and by 7:30pm everything will be in its shadow, whilst the actual sunset at that time of the year would be 10:00pm.

We have had to build a line of houses alongside the southern boundary of our plot of land to reduce the noise and pollution impact of the busy road. This means we have greatly reduced access to light already. Losing afternoon light too due to the school would have a huge impact on us.

Should we have to place large fences and trees along the boundary to give us privacy, this could further affect our deprivation of sun.

What about view?

Although you do not have a right to a view over someone else’s land, if we think an application is unreasonable because of the effect on your outlook, we will try to negotiate changes to help overcome this.

Outlook must be distinguished from a view. Where one or more window looks out into some space, building something in front of it, i.e. removing that outlook, can be considered unacceptable.

Currently our outlook from ChacCo windows to the north / northwest would be some houses and industrial builds, but mainly a fair amount of space and sky. Putting a the huge school building will massively affect our outlook. Having to put up raised fences and trees may help with privacy and noise but will affect outlook too.

Effect on trees and the landscape

Dixons have got 2 sites to work across. One on each side of Barrack Road. Only the north side of Barrack Road has adjacent residential areas and is on view to the people who live locally. The south side is away from residents, so any green space is essentially lost as view to residents and any access to amenities (playing field) is not so accessible to local community.

The plan has got virtually ALL the green space of the south side of Barrack Road where it is of no visual and limited accessible benefit to the local community and the main building is crammed into one site that is very visible to residents. The existing green space that is viewable (and previously accessible) to local community will be reduced with this plan.

Chapeltown is a densely populated inner city urban area: any green space viewable to local residents is a vital commodity for well-being. Any planning considerations must look at providing any green space in an area that will benefit the local community – not hidden away as the current proposal does.

Other areas planners will consider

  • conservation of buildings and conservation of the natural environment
  • effect on neighbouring properties
  • what the building or development will look like
  • previous planning applications
  • National Planning Policy Framework, Development Plan Policies
  • Supplementary Planning Guidance and other planning policies
  • government guidance and legislation
  • effect on the character of an area
  • effect on living conditions

Other considerations that MAY be worth mentioning

  • 1,000 people + ChaCo housing + unity sheltered housing + General practice all in a very condensed space, yet lots of open spaces on the site over the road with no residents around it
  • Having Primary and Secondary school together in same building is very intimidating for very you children. More preferable to keep in separate sites/buildings (see Roundhay “all through” school with primary school a mile away from secondary)
  • Community engagement by Dixons very poor. Wouldn’t have been difficult to get someone from ChaCo there. ChaCo have themselves initiated a meeting with school to look at how they could work together for the benefit of the community
  • ChaCo is a very innovative & unique project with community, affordability, sustainability and ecology at its core. It would be a great asset to Chapeltown. The plan as it stands is a very big threat to Chaco’s existence.
  • Driver for one building plan seems to be costs, a through school structure can still be maintained across separate buildings/sites (see Roundhay). It feels very wrong that just because the school is in a poor area like Chapeltown corners are cut that are not considered in other areas (Roundhay).
  • Unity Housing Association is providing sheltered housing for elderly people. Funnelling ALL the school children past Unity, ChaCo and local residents is being very inconsiderate to the local community.

What will not be considered?

This will vary with each application but the following are not usually valid planning matters and cannot be taken into account:

  • issues covered by other legislation, such as Licensing, Building Control, or Health and Safety
  • private property rights, such as boundary or access disputes
  • the developer’s morals, motivation, or activities elsewhere
  • perceived impact on property values
  • Competition between businesses

Take Action on Dixons!

Dixons Trinity Academy’s proposals for their new schools in Chapeltown are seriously flawed. We need these schools, but just because this is Chapeltown doesn’t mean they can be built on the cheap without regard to the needs of the local community. If ChaCo members, supporters and local residents work together, we can kick up enough fuss to ensure that the current plans get rejected in favour of a much better solution.

What’s wrong with their plans?

Read on for a step by step guide to how you can help…

Would you want to send your 4 year old here?

This is all about people power. The more people who take part in these actions, the greater our chances of getting the schools that Chapeltown kids deserve.

Register your objection to these plans

The planners at Leeds City Council want to know what local people think about these proposals – but you have to comment before 1 June. Here’s how to do it.

  1. It’s a good idea to compose your comments in a separate file because:
    • the online comments page will time-out after 50 minutes
    • you’ll have a copy of your comments that you can send to your local Councillor.
  2. All the background info is on this page and there are more tips here. But don’t copy and paste! Decide what matters to you, and then use your own words. Don’t slag off Dixons: stick to what’s wrong with their plans. It doesn’t have to be long – just one or two points will do. If you’re going (or hoping) to live at ChaCo, tell them.
  3. Once you’ve composed your objection and read it through again, save the file. You then have three ways of getting it to the Planners:
    • Using their online portal. You’ll need to register so they know who you are. Then copy and paste the text from your file into the comments box and send it off.
      UPDATE 22/5/18: Unfortunately the Public Access website is currently very unreliable, so you’ll probably find it simpler to use the email method below.
    • By post to Planning Services, The Leonardo Building, 2 Rossington Street, Leeds, LS2 8HD. Make sure you include your name and address and the Application Number: 18/02283.
    • By email to – make sure you include your name and address, and for the Subject put Application Number: 18/02283.

Send your local Councillors a copy of your objection

Ask them what they plan to do about it. They’ll be wanting you to vote for them in future, so they’ve got a vested interest in keeping you happy! The Chapel Allerton Ward Councillors are:

Cllr Jane Dowson:
Cllr Mohammed Rafique:
Cllr Eileen Taylor:

Spread the word!

The more people who know about these plans, the better. Tell all your friends and ask them to support us – particularly if they live in the area.

And if you’re a member or supporter of ChaCo, we need help chatting to people in the streets nearest to where the school’s going to be, and encouraging them to sign our petition. Get in touch with if you’d like to help with this.

Thank you

Dixons Academy: traffic issues

The proposed new Dixons Trinity Chapeltown Academy on Leopold Street plans to squeeze a 420-pupil primary school and a 560-pupil secondary school into one massive 3-storey building. So how will these 980 pupils travel to school?

The “Design and Access Statement”

An overview of Willmott Dixon’s proposals – the Design and Access Statement – can be downloaded here.

In Section 5.1 of this document it states:

There will be no parent vehicle drop-off permitted onsite.

…in other words, they’re expecting/hoping the local streets will be able to cope with the inevitable increased traffic twice a day.

The “Transport Statement”

Willmott Dixon have also prepared a Transport Statement.

This document includes findings of a parking survey in local streets – which concludes:

4.11 The parking survey shows that there is capacity in the vicinity of the proposed development for school drop offs to be accommodated on the existing highway network. In the morning, there are 201 spaces available within the surveyed area and in the afternoon, there are 228 spaces within the surveyed area.

The image above is based on the map on p58 showing where they’ve found these spaces:

  • Leopold Street
  • Hamilton Gardens
  • Hamilton Place
  • Harriet Street
  • Dodgson Avenue
  • Frankland Place (but not ChaCo’s access road)
  • Leopold Gardens
  • Chapeltown Children’s Centre

They’ve included the whole of Leopold Street, including the drop-off/pick-up area for Holy Rosary & St Anne’s Primary!

They then go on to estimate the likely number of pupils coming by different modes of transport:

7.6 In order to understand the modal split for different travel modes for journeys to and from school by pupils, data has been sourced from the LCC Sustainable
Education Strategy for Schools and Colleges 2017-2021, as summarised in Table 7.2.
This includes for both primary and secondary pupils and does not separate the two.

They’ve made a major error here: Table 7.2 on page 30 shows the total number of pupils (for both primary and secondary) as 420 instead of the actual figure of 980!

So if we accept their prediction of 25.8% of all pupils traveling by car, that’s not 105 (as they claim), but 253. This error invalidates much of their subsequent argument.

Twice a day there are likely to be 250 extra drivers on Leopold Street looking for somewhere to park to pick-up or drop-off children at the school. And Willmott Dixon’s own transport consultants have demonstrated that even if every available parking space in all those seven streets is used, that would still be insufficient.

In practice

Dixons will point out, of course, that their start and finish times are staggered, which will indeed help to ease the situation a bit.

The Transport Statement already acknowledges that:

6.19 It is clear from several site visits that there is a heavy incidence of car parking at the east end of Leopold St which generally takes place from early morning through to early evening.

However, they make no mention of the following:

  • Many of the road users and pedestrians in the immediate vicinity of the school are likely to be particularly vulnerable – the elderly people in the new Unity Housing Association flats at the end of Frankland Place, and people visiting the Health Centre and Children’s Centre.
  • There are already significant drop-off/pick-up traffic and parking issues reported by Holy Rosary and St Anne’s Primary School at the other end of Leopold Street – which will not only be exacerbated by the increased traffic, but may also effectively remove some of the “available” parking spaces in Leopold Street.
  • Spencer Place is often very congested and when cars are parked on both sides of the road, it effectively becomes “single lane with passing places”.
  • On Fridays, traffic and parking problems on Spencer Place and in the vicinity of the Islamic Centre tend to increase around the times of “Friday Prayers”.
  • Air pollution is already high in the area. A recent test on the corner of Barrack Road and Roundhay Road indicated NOx levels 10% above the legal maximum. Traffic needs to be reduced, particularly near the Health Centre, Children’s Centre, the older people’s flats and the school itself.
  • In order for ChaCo to be granted planning permission, we had to demonstrate that our development would accommodate all associated parking on-site, with no overspill onto Leopold Street or surrounding streets. We think it only fair that a similar condition be imposed on Dixons Trinity Chapeltown.

In conclusion

Willmott Dixon need to amend their proposals to ensure that there is no negative impact on local residents or on staff and visitors to the Health Centre, Children’s Centre or their own school due to increases in:

  • traffic
  • congestion
  • parking problems
  • road traffic accidents
  • pollution

<< Back to the New School Proposals page

How to comment

You can find full details of the school’s planning application, including other people’s comments, here.

Anyone can comment on these proposals – especially if they live nearby – but you must do so by 1 June. There’s more info here on how to comment, but remember that you’ll need to give your name and address and quote the planning reference, which is 18/02283.

New school proposals

“I’ve supported Chapeltown Cohousing over the last eight years as they’ve worked against the odds on their innovative community housing project. I’m not going to stand by and let all their hard work be undermined by these ill-conceived plans for a school building that’s utterly disproportionate for this residential area. We need more schools here but, for goodness’ sake, let’s do it right!”
Fabian Hamilton MP, Leeds North East

When Leeds City Council gave us an exclusivity agreement in December 2016 to purchase the land for our new homes, we were told that our next door neighbour to the northwest would be a 2-form entry primary school for 420 children. Dixons Trinity Academy Willmott Dixon Construction Ltd have instead submitted a planning application for a MASSIVE 3-storey, 980-pupil through-school which would have a significant negative impact on ChaCo.

We recognise that Chapeltown needs more school places, and a secondary school is long overdue. But Dixons the ESFA have purchased enough land to be able to site these schools in a way that is more considerate to local residents and without adding to existing traffic and parking problems in the area.

We ask all our supporters and other local residents who are affected to join us in challenging the worst aspects of these proposals.


The images above show some of our ChaCo homes on Barrack Road and how the proposed school dominates our site.

Who’s responsible?

Before getting into the details of our objections, who should we point the finger at? The schools will be run by Dixons Trinity Chapeltown – but the two headteachers say it’s unfair to tarnish the good reputation of their schools by referring to “Dixons” when they have had no say on the location or design of the school.

Yes, but… they and their employers seem insistent on having both primary and secondary schools in one building – which is at the root of most of our objections. Also, from the Design and Access Statement:

4.6.1 Massing & Material Development
Initial proposals for the massing and elevations of the building were developed based on Dixon Trinity Academy’s desire that the building should ‘stand out’, that it should be a catalyst for regeneration and change.

Has anyone in the local community expressed a desire for a ‘stand-out’ building? And anyway, does a very, very big shoebox really qualify?

At present, it looks like the responsibility for the current proposals is shared between Dixons Trinity Academy, Willmott Dixon (the construction company who prepared the plans and will be wanting to minimise their costs and maximise their profits), and the Education and Skills Funding Agency (who don’t seem to want to allocate enough money to do the job properly).

Meanwhile, please understand that we’re not blaming the teaching staff, who appear to be doing a great job under difficult circumstances.

Issues affecting ChaCo

Overbearing appearance – a huge building, dwarfing and encroaching on the ChaCo houses and set on higher land so that it towers 9m above the eaves level of the nearest ChaCo home.

Loss of privacy – the height, proximity and elevated position of the building mean that our homes and gardens will be overlooked by the first and second floor windows of the school.

Loss of evening sunlight – the same set of factors mean that our shared garden will be largely in shadow on summer evenings. Our food-growing area will be the most affected.

Noise – this was always going to be an issue, even with the original 420-pupil primary school. This proposal is for a 980-pupil school. We feel it’s particularly inconsiderate to place the playground right next to the only residential properties where it will cause maximum impact.

Issues affecting local residents (including ChaCo)

Increased traffic – The Transport Statement indicates that there will be around 250 drivers picking up and dropping off children twice a day, and that there is insufficient parking capacity in local streets (below) to be able to cope with this. Despite the existing parking issues at the east end of Leopold Street and the drop-off/pick-up problems already experienced by Holy Rosary Primary School at the other end, the current proposals make no on-site provision to ease the situation. Read more about the traffic issues.


Loss of green space – before the temporary primary school for Dixons was built on the Leopold Street playing fields, this extensive green space was available free of charge to local schools and community groups – including ChaCo, who have used it on several occasions. Originally, Willmott Dixon promised that they would reinstate the playing field once the new primary school was built. Now, however, they are planning to use a third of it for their traffic loop. They are proposing to compensate for this by adding a new multi-use games area in a non-residential area the other side of the A58 Barrack Road. There is already a MUGA on that site, and this provision just does not address the real needs of families in Chapeltown (including ours). Young children like swings, slides, climbing frames etc and grass to run around on – preferably without having to cross a dangerous main road to get there. Furthermore, Dixons say they are planning to charge community groups for access to the much-reduced green space.

Even fenced off, the Leopold Street playing fields add so much to the feel of our neighbourhood. They need protecting and opening up so that all local residents can enjoy them.

Unpopular educational environment – many local parents of primary age children would much prefer the primary and secondary schools to be separate anyway. School can be scary enough for 4 yr olds without having to cope with nearly 1,000 other children up to age 16 in the same building. An attractive low structure with no more than 420 primary age children is likely to be far less daunting than a massive 3-storey block squeezed onto a site that’s far too small.

What’s the solution?

Leeds City Council has a statutory obligation to provide enough school places, so we’re not going to be able to stop these schools being built – and that’s never been our intention. Instead, we want them designed in a way that takes account of the needs of the local community rather than seeing us as collateral damage.

It’s not our job to design Dixons’ schools for them, but many of us in ChaCo think it’s ridiculous to try and cut costs by cramming both schools onto such a tight site when they’ve already bought a much bigger site on the other side of Barrack Road. We will be campaigning for Wilmott Dixon to revert to their original plan of putting the primary school in the residential area (alongside ChaCo) and the secondary school on the other site. This would remove most of our objections at a stroke, and avoid adding to the existing traffic, parking, pollution and road safety problems on residential streets.

You can comment on the planning application using the links in the sidebar. Or – if you’re a Chapeltown resident – you could email one of our local Councillors (below) – but don’t delay: we only have until 1 June to have our say.

Cllr Jane Dowson:
Cllr Mohammed Rafique:
Cllr Eileen Taylor:

Taking action

There’s a detailed step by step guide on how to take action on this page.

Who lives where?

On 29 Dec 2017, at 14:04, Peter Richardson wrote:

Dear full member,
We’ve said that when you become a member you get allocated a house but haven’t specified exactly which one. We’ve also linked signing the pre-sales agreement with allocation of an actual house. But before we get to the point of prioritising, it might work if we all just say what we want. If not, then we’ll have to invoke our (maybe slightly unformed) procedures.
So which plot do you actually want?

Allocations so far

Please note that we originally managed to get some of the door numbers in the wrong order – so if you’re in a duplex or a 1-bed flat, the number showing in the table below may be 1 more or less than what you agreed with Pete.

The problem arose because (as Maja pointed out) some of the blocks are mirror images of the one next door, so sometimes the door to the ground floor flat is on the left and sometimes it’s on the right.

I think we’ve now got the order right – and you should still be in the apropriate size unit in the block that you agreed. If not, tell Bill asap!


Door No. House type Schedule Allocated to
1 shared house 1  
2 4-bed house 2  
3 4-bed house 3 Keeling-Wells
4 3-bed house 4  
5 3-bed house 5 Coles
6 1-bed flat 7 Adamczyk-Kasprzycka
7 3-bed duplex 6  
8 3-bed duplex 8  
9 1-bed flat 9 Neelam
10 1-bed flat 11  
11 2-bed large 10 Jones
12 2-bed large 12 Phelps
13 1-bed flat 13  
14 1-bed flat 15 Lawson
15 2-bed large 14 Webbe
16 2-bed large 16 Ayeni
17 1-bed flat 17 Francis
18 4-bed house 18 Arbel-Levi
19 3-bed house 19 Langdana
20 3-bed house 20 Gregg-Lovelace
21 1-bed flat 22  
22 3-bed duplex 21  
23 3-bed duplex 23 Namubiru
24 1-bed flat 24 Davies
25 4-bed house 25 Richardson
26 4-bed house 26 Heywood
27 2-bed over CH 27 Ryan
28 2-bed over CH 28 Armitage
29 2-bed over CH 29 Leung

Minutes of Members' meetings 2015

28/5/15 (or 26?)
2/11/15 (12?)