Delays mean eyesore misery will continue

ACTION CALL: Councillors Janet Watson and Gareth Dadd outside the former cadet hut on Castlegarth, Thirsk.

ACTION CALL: Councillors Janet Watson and Gareth Dadd outside the former cadet hut on Castlegarth, Thirsk.

First published in News

THE Reserve Forces and Cadets Association (RFCA) has said residents will have to wait a further two months before an eyesore building that has become a magnet for anti-social behaviour is demolished.

Thirsk county councillor Gareth Dadd and the Mayor of Thirsk, Councillor Janet Watson, called for a solution to enable the immediate removal of the derelict Castlegarth building after receiving a tide of complaints from residents.

The RFCA's former cadet hut has stood empty for more than a year since a new base was launched at Thirsk School and Sixth Form.

Following the move, the RFCA applied to demolish the detachment's former wooden building, on the protected heritage site of Thirsk Castle, but was told it had to meet conditions set down by English Heritage to preserve the area which has Ancient Monument status.

Roger de Mowbray held the motte-and-bailey castle, built sometime between 1092 and 1130, against Henry II in 1174, but the following year it was surrendered to the king, who ordered its destruction.

An RFCA spokesman said it has had to obtain numerous permissions from Hambleton District Council and English Heritage to demolish the building, and due to the sensitivity of the site it had also employed an archaeologist to provide guidance on dealing with the historic area.

He said: "As you can appreciate this project needs to be handled with great care and we the RFCA are following all the correct procedures and making sure every department is fully aware of our intentions.

"All being well we are looking to start work at the beginning of July, after consultation with the archaeologist as the ground conditions should be drier at that time of year."

Coun Dadd said he was dismayed the RFCA had refused to consider alternative schemes which would overcome the archaeological issues.

He said: "The RFCA should remove the building to just above ground level in order to alleviate the suffering of local residents and this should be done as soon as possible.

"The remainder could then await the July date in order to satisfy ground issues."

News of the delay came a week after Thirsk Town Council expressed its frustration that attempts to clean up another nearby derelict premises had been rebuffed.

Camerons Brewery and receivers Eddisons said that, until their long-running legal dispute over the former Aspire bar, at the southern entrance to Thirsk's Market Place, was resolved, it was unlikely the triple-fronted premises could be tidied up.

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