Yorkshire Water’s Harlow Hill housing plans resubmitted

tis  The view over Harrogate from the top of the Harlow observatory tower on the open day.  100910M2b.
tis The view over Harrogate from the top of the Harlow observatory tower on the open day. 100910M2b.
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Controversial plans to build luxury homes on Yorkshire Water’s land off Otley Road have been resubmitted.

Keyland Developments, the property development arm of Kelda Group which owns Yorkshire Water, have changed the plans from 13 homes to nine and submitted the latest application to Harrogate Borough Council (HBC).

Keyland Developments Ltd withdrew the plans earlier in the year after hundreds of residents voiced concerns over the loss of the view from Harlow Hill which stretches across Harrogate.

Almost 500 people joined a Facebook group calling to ‘Save Harlow’s View’ and hundreds of residents voted to object to the plans.

Wharfedale Crescent resident Graham Gotts started the campaign and said: “They are taking away the view from the majority to give it to the minority. I walk my dog there every day, so do so many people.

“There are memorial benches there because people enjoy that view over Harrogate and beyond. Judging by the prices of the other Yorkshire Water sites these won’t be affordable for normal local people.”

MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough Andrew Jones wrote to HBC to express concerns residents has raised with him over the lack of affordable housing in the previous application.

As the previous application had fewer than 15 houses, no affordable housing was needed and since May 2015 any application with less than 10 homes won’t need to provide affordable housing.

The new plan is for nine homes.

Peter Garrett, managing director of Keyland Developments Ltd, said: “The original application was withdrawn for planning issues which have now been resolved.

“We have been working closely with the council on the revised scheme, which is significantly smaller than the original proposal. We hope that it will be received positively and recognised as a much-needed addition to the Harrogate housing provision.”

Keyland submitted an outline planning application in November last year having identified the two acre site as prime for residential development. The revised plans follow an extensive consultation process with HBC and have resulted in a 30 per cent reduction in the number of family homes, with just nine homes now proposed for development.

If plans go ahead it will be the third former Yorkshire Water site to be developed in Harrogate. Land off Harlow Moor Road has been developed by Miller Homes with prices ranging from £275,000 to £550,000 and as has land off Cornwall Road where Linden Road homes are selling homes for between £800,000 to £1,750,000.

Neil Hind, chairman of pinewoods Conservation Group

“We always knew this application would return despite hundreds of objections from our members and local residents. The impact on the view from Harlow Hill was a major concern but we will also be looking at the impact on the adjoining field which has remained uncut this year to encourage wild flower growth and increased bio-diversity.

The Pinewoods Conservation Group will review the amended plans in detail and look to respond on due course.”