Developers told to rethink 36-home plan for Harrogate district village

Developers wanting to build 36 homes in a Harrogate district village have been told to go back to the drawing board by councillors.

Wednesday, 31st March 2021, 10:49 am
Stonebridge Homes are behind the plans for land near Goldsborough's cricket club and primary school.

Stonebridge Homes are behind the plans for land near Goldsborough's cricket club and primary school which were initially refused by Harrogate Borough Council's planning committee in 2018 and then granted outline permission a year later.

At a meeting today, the developers were seeking a final stamp of approval for the Station Road scheme but were turned down by councillors concerned over the number and layout of the homes, with one saying they would become an "urban development just tacked onto this wonderful village".

Councillor Zoe Metcalfe also said more needed to be done to reduce the impact on nearby homes and the village's conservation area.

"This is a really important area that we need to look after and I do not think the developers are being respectful at all," she said.

"They have got outline permission so these houses are going to happen but I would like to see less and a better layout."

Councillor Andrew Paraskos added: "I really do think with these smaller sites on the edges of villages and towns that we should be pushing for the best that we can get.

"This development will be the first thing you are going to see entering this village - and you will probably see it from the A59 too - so why not make it something that we are really proud of? We should be going for designs that are exemplary."

One resident, Noel Evans, spoke in objection to the plans today saying the 36 homes were "not needed nor wanted by anyone in the village" as he also made calls for the number to be reduced to 12.

"This is the most intense development ever considered in Goldsborough," Mr Evans said.

"Its urban density will be totally out of keeping with the Goldsborough conservation area which it borders directly. If houses must be built here, reducing the number to one third of the planned numbers would solve all of these problems."

The plans included a mix of one to five-bedroom properties, with 14 classed as affordable.

Becky Lomas, an agent for the developers, told today's meeting that the layout of the homes and landscaping had been "carefully" designed to minimise the impact on residents living on Station Road.

She said the proposals "do not give rise to any overbearing, overshadowing or overlooking harms" to the area, however, this did not ring true with councillors who have asked for a rethink on how the homes are set out.

Councillor Pat Marsh said the developers should make sure the proposals are "absolutely right" for the area before asking for planning permission again.

She said: "At the moment I feel this is not right so taking it back and having those discussions with both residents and local members is the most sensible way forward."

Councillors voted unanimously to defer the plans for further discussions between the developers, council planners and residents.

By Jacob Webster, Local Democracy Reporter