WITH the For Sale signs going up at the Yorkshire Dales beauty spot at How Stean Gorge there's a real opportunity but also a concern. It's a fabulous spot and has been known as Little Switzerland for many a year. While such names can be bandied around for places which really don't warrant the title in this case it is a really special place, a deep limestone gorge green and luscious.

And thereby could hang the problem. Since 1902 it's been a spot for visitors but that is largely all it was, people could take picnics and tackle the steep sided walks. Then a little cafe was set up to take advantage of the opportunities to make the most of the glorious surroundings.

Over the past 20 years a bunkbarn has been created for 16 with 26 camping sites, a restaurant/cafe for 50 with a dramatic glass floor so you can peer down into the Gorge itself, and now planning permission has been obtained for the introduction of seven, Swiss-style chalets, sleeping between eight to twelve.

The activity side has also been developed with outdoor pursuits. This is good news it all helps to keep the Dales a thriving place.

But there is a fine line that shouldn't be crossed. Little Switzerland doesn't want to become medium sized Switzerland. It's for sale through Christies and they reckon it will be of interest to a range of potential buyers, from multi-site/corporate style operators, to lifestyle or family purchasers.

They're not saying at the moment how much it's going to cost, simply open to offers. We await with interest, the four acre site is in the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty so major development is not on the cards, let's hope How Stean stays Little Switzerland for years yet.