Next step forward in Starbeck homeless shelter construction as new plans lodged

The homeless shelter at Starbeck will have room for up to 19 rough sleepers when completed.
The homeless shelter at Starbeck will have room for up to 19 rough sleepers when completed.

Plans for a homeless shelter capable of housing nearly 20 rough sleepers in Harrogate have taken another step forward, with new details for work at the site lodged with the council.

A discharge of conditions was submitted for the Spa Lane development in April, requesting permission for a range of work to get the site ready for construction.

This includes specific plans for surface water management, parking, and various environmental management details.

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A discharge of conditions application is made when a project requires details of specific aspects of a development which was not fully described in the original application.

The plans also include details about a community room that will be at the site which can be used by local voluntary and community organisations.

Examples of organisations that could hire out the room include tenants and residents associations, community groups, support groups and certain interest groups, according to the documents submitted by the council.

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Once constructed, the shelter will provide room for up to 19 rough sleepers from around the area.

Planning permission for the shelter was granted in August last year, despite 40 objections being received during consultation.

Residents and community groups in Starbeck voiced their fears at the time as to how well managed the facility will be, and the increase of service users in the winter months.

Reasons for approval centred around the facility being “essential” to ensure that the council had an adequate supply of accommodation for single homeless people in the district, a statutory duty.

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Following its approval, cabinet member for housing and safer communities Coun Mike Chambers said the Spa Lane development was “a good news story”.

The self-contained units would act as a “one stop shop where everything can be sorted” for homeless people he added, while it would also contain a space capable of providing emergency accommodation during severe weather for rough sleepers.

The development would also separate single homeless people from family units at other facilities.

Construction costs for the accommodation will be met from a combination of the council’s housing revenue account and a grant from Government body Homes England.

Lachlan Leeming, Local Democracy Reporter