Airedale International Factory

A major fire in September 2013 destroyed 80% of the Airedale production facility in Rawdon, Leeds. The decision was made to demolish the entire premises and rebuild a new facility on roughly the same footprint, replacing the previous building on a like for like basis, amounting to circa 23,000 sq.metres. WSP were commissioned to provide environmental, transport and flood risk services in support of this detailed planning application.



  • Leeds, England, UK


  • Airedale International air conditioning Ltd

Project Value

  • £2m construction value

Project Status

  • Complete

We provided multi-disciplinary environmental services to support the client to achieve planning permission to re-build their factory following fire and to construct a new research and development facility.

The Client’s timetable for the overall project was constrained due to the need to undertake significant ground-works for the construction of the new facility prior to winter. Therefore to avoid delay to the programme, WSP successfully negotiated with the local authority to provide additional ecological, transportation and acoustic information during the determination period, saving time in the project programme.

As the Site exceeded the area threshold for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) (under Schedule 2 of the EIA Regulations 2011), WSP ‘Screened’ the development first to determine whether an EIA would be required to accompany the planning application. A screening request was prepared and submitted to the Local Planning Authority (LPA) that identified the potential environmental effects arising from the development, whilst providing a technical evidence base for the ‘scoping out’ of particular environmental topics.  Although the LPA determined the development was not subject to formal EIA, WSP provided the following stand-alone technical services to support the client with their planning applications:

  • Artificial lighting assessment
  • Acoustic assessment
  • Extended phase one habitat survey
  • Protected species surveys (Bat activity/emergence surveys, internal building inspections and Great Crested Newt surveys)
  • Tree survey and arboricultural Implications assessment
  • Transport statement and travel plan
  • Flood risk assessment

Following the grant of planning permission in April 2014, the client retained WSP to provide support and we aided with the discharge of planning conditions in relation to ecology, transport, lighting and BREEAM.

Our proactive Screening limited the level of environmental assessment required by the client and through extensive consultation with the local authority we negotiated on the delivery of key deliverables to minimise delay to the client’s programme. Our approach resulted in timely determination and the planning application being approved with no objections, much to the delight of the client.