Dunlopillo latest: Harrogate MP urges people to give their views on new plans for Pannal site

Andrew Jones MP is encouraging people to make their views known on controversial new plans to build an apartment block at the site of the iconic Dunlopillo building in Pannal.

Friday, 7th January 2022, 5:23 pm
Blast from the past: The original plans for a new apartment building at the Dunlopillo site in Pannal gained planning permission last summer under so-called permitted development rights.

And the Harrogate and Knaresborough MP says he will support a request for the plan to go before Harrogate Borough Council’s planning committee should Pannal and Burn Bridge Parish Council wish it to do so.

Mr Jones said: "This time round I want as many residents as possible to submit their views and I will certainly support a request for it to go before the council’s planning committee should the parish council wish it to do so.

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“In the meantime I encourage residents to submit their views to the council.”

The original plans submitted by Quattro Property Group for a six-storey building containing 48 flats gained planning permission last summer under so-called permitted development rights.

The new plans would reduce the number of apartments to 38.

These rights mean that the conversion of empty offices to residential can be done quickly, the issues that can be considered when deciding whether to grant planning permission are reduced and, because of the short timeframe for a decision, potentially without going to a meeting of the council’s planning committee.

Many in the community felt they had been deprived of their chance to comment on the application and the Harrogate MP spoke out about the process in their support.

At the time, Mr Jones raised the matter with Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing and Communities Michael Gove, saying: “Such a significant proposal should go through the normal planning process, be thoroughly appraised by council officers and scrutinised by the councillors at a committee meeting where the public can also have their say."

A new application has since been submitted for redevelopment of the building which, if approved, would supersede the earlier application.

If the new application was rejected to be then they already have an outstanding permission and they will either have to go back to that or go back to the drawing board with a fresh application.

Dunlopillo - which had made pillows and bedding - moved out of its Station Road site in 2008 when the company went into administration.

Its former office building in Pannal then fell into disrepair and vandalism, with residents condemning it as a "monstrosity".

But many residents have also complained about its possible replacement on the site by what they describe as a "high rise block of flats".

To comment on the plans, visit Harrogate Borough Council's website at:

https://www.harrogate.gov.uk/planning-development