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National Park housing development plan unveiled

[Monday 28 March 2011]

The Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA) has launched its new Housing Development Plan with the aim of delivering sites for affordable housing over the next 15 years.

The plan has already been amended following consultation on a draft document last summer and the Authority is now inviting formal representations in preparation for an examination by a planning inspector, probably early nearly next year.

The plan allocates 34 sites for development, ranging in size from two houses up to the largest site – on the edge Sedbergh – for 30.

Fourteen earlier sites have been dropped following local consultation, although four new ones have been added.

Peter Stockton, the YDNPA’s Strategic Planning Officer, said: “If all 34 sites were developed, there would be enough land for 230 new homes.

“The Authority would expect half of these to be affordable homes to rent or buy, probably through the involvement of a local housing association. The other half would be open market housing, albeit with a legal agreement restricting their occupancy to households that need to live or work in the National Park.”

Yvonne Peacock, Chairman of the Authority’s Housing Working Group, said: “It seems to have taken a long time to get to this stage. What we have found along the way is a consensus on the need for more affordable housing in the National Park but little agreement on how or where it should be provided.

“With the publication of the plan, it feels that we are now making progress and can enter the final phase of testing by an independent planning inspector.

“Our intention is to use local planning policy and to work with landowners, communities and housing providers to release more land for locally affordable housing. This will help keep younger households living in the area which should make a long term difference to community sustainability. “

Anyone with an interest in housing and local planning policy is invited to make representations about the plan in the form of a statement of support, a comment, an objection or perhaps all three.

The plan and its supporting documents are available for inspection on the Authority’s website www.yorkshiredales.org.uk/housingdevelopmentplan or at local libraries and National Park offices.

A response form is available with the plan and should be returned by noon on May 16. The Authority will consider the representations received and decide whether it needs to make any further changes. The representations will then be passed onto a planning inspector who will hold a public examination and decide whether the plan is fit for purpose or not.

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