AFTER several years of planning battles and appeals, much-needed housing is finally being built in Stokesley - so news that a major developer wants to build another 110 homes in the town was unlikely to have been welcomed with open arms.

At the moment in the region of 400 homes are being built in the town, which is also sandwiched between multiple developments in surrounding villages. Less than ten miles away - over the border in South Tees - hundreds more homes are being built.

Stokesley town councillor Ian Blakemore says they already have their anticipated five-year supply of housing being built, and the latest development would see them meeting a seven-year housing need. At what point do these small towns and villages reach a point where they are changed beyond all recognition in the housing development gold rush?

It’s a picturesque, desirable area to live which seems particularly desirable to housing developers.

But they appear less keen when it comes to building the kind of homes desperately needed by young families and other local people; there are still too many people locally in desperate need of the security of their own home.

Several people have observed how few “affordable” homes have appeared on the Stokesley Grange development being built in Stokesley. Elsewhere, it seems the same story; with more profitable, luxury homes taking priority. It makes commercial sense to focus on the more profitable properties in the early stages of building, but doesn’t address the local housing crisis for many people. How short-changed will people feel when they find themselves living in a sea of four and five bedroomed executive homes and still no home to call their own?