Rejected Skipton Road housing plan ‘a step too far’

tis. The Killinghall Village sign. 1204074aa.
tis. The Killinghall Village sign. 1204074aa.
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A planning application which had only three objections was refused by Harrogate Borough Council’s planning committee on Tuesday (November 11).

Councillors went against planning officers recommendations and refused plans for up to 135 homes on land between Killinghall and Skipton
Road.

The proposal was for an extension to a site for 210 homes that developers CEG were granted permission for earlier in the year.

Councillors blasted the proposals as a ‘step too far’ and voted 12 to four in favour of rejecting the application.

Coun Greta Knight (Lib Dem, Woodfield) said: “I can’t support it because I can’t support something that I think will cause traffic upheaval and congestion.

“It is going a step too far.”

Coun Pat Marsh (Lib Dem, Hookstone) said: “We have not got the support of the high ways, and we never will.

“They seem to think we can take everything on these roads but this area is already at a stand still, so we need to look sensibly at things.”

This application is CEG’s second for the area north of Skipton Road and developers Bellway Homes have submitted proposals to build over 200 houses nearby in land that had been earmarked for a Dobbies Garden Centre.

Coun Alan Skidmore (Con, Ripon Spa) had asked about the cumulative impact of the three proposed housing developments and Tesco superstore on the road network and was told that North Yorkshire County Council’s highway department believe the road networks will be able to cope.

Val Blackburn, vice chairman of Killinghall Parish Council said the extra homes would impact the village community in Killinghall.

At the meeting she quoted National Trust chairman Simon Jenkins and said: “We need to stop this guerilla warfare between the developer and the countryside.”

She told councillors: “I urge you to stand up and be counted.”

Despite her concerns the plans only received three formal objections, though she claims that not enough people in the village were aware of the development proposals.

Planning officers had said the plans should have been aprroved due to a lack of housing supply so the applications will now go before the council’s planning referral committee for a final decision.

Steve McBurney from CEG, said: “We are naturally disappointed by the committee’s decision not to support the officer’s recommendation for approval.

“This development could deliver some of the homes that are desperately needed in Harrogate as part of a sustainable proposal.

“We will now consider our next steps.”