New date set for inquiry into Stokesley housing plans

A NEW date has been set for a public inquiry into the development of more than 200 homes in Stokesley.

The plans to build up to 213 houses and business premises on land at White House Farm, on the edges of the town, were refused outline planning permission by Hambleton District Council last April.

Applicants, Northumbrian Land Ltd, appealed the council’s decision and now the matter will be determined by public inquiry - which was due to begin on December 18  in Northallerton, but was cancelled over “procedural complications”.

Towards the end of last year Stokesley Parish Council sent a letter to the inspectors, requesting at least part of of the inquiry be held in Stokesley.

A new date has been set and the public inquiry will be held in Stokesley Town Hall on April 10.

The application was refused planning permission on the grounds that it failed to deliver enough affordable housing, or any open space, sport or recreation facilities.

It is believed land to the north of the proposed development, also owned by Northumbrian Land Ltd, has been potentially earmarked as recreation space for the development.

Hambleton District Council received 28 letters of objections to the plans. Many expressed concern at the risk of flooding, saying the site already suffers from excessive standing water in heavy rain, which would only be exacerbated by building an industrial development.

There were also concerns raised about the impact of the industrial development on other business areas of Stokesley.

One objector wrote: “I am really concerned about the new industrial development next to a residential area when we have a designated industrial and business park as well as the Terry Dicken Industrial Estate.

“There are many empty properties available for sale/rent in these industrial areas without creating yet another in an unsuitable area.”

The plans received two letters of support, one from a Great Ayton resident who said it provided much-needed housing “to fulfil the planning authorities requirements” and disputed the theory the site was liable to flooding.

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