A DEVELOPER has lodged an appeal against a decision to refuse permission for 113 homes to be built on the site of a village farm shop and farmland.

More than 600 objections were lodged with Hambleton District Council over a proposal by Gladman Developments to build homes off Station Road in Great Ayton.

The outline plans involve demolishing four outbuildings, which are part of School Farm, including its popular farm shop, and converting another farm building for commercial use.

Loading article content

Hambleton District Council’s planning committee unanimously rejected the application in January. But now an appeal has been launched by the company against the decision.

The plans put forward included a mixture of properties on the 4.5 hectare site, including 50 per cent affordable homes.

Residents put forward a range of concerns over the proposals, including fears it would increase traffic on the roads, which they said was already too narrow for pedestrians, as well as the impact on local schools and wildlife. People were also concerned about the loss of School Farm shop, which they described as a “community asset”.

The shop is run by School Farm’s tenant farmers, Mark and Cath Phalp, who have farmed at School Farm for more than 23 years, but said they only learnt of the plans after receiving a phone call from the land agent, who said the field was being developed.

They warned the farm would not be able to continue with the loss of the farm buildings and shop and feared they would lose their livelihood.

At the council planning meeting in January, when the proposals were discussed, an agent speaking on behalf of applicant Gladman Developments said the proposed estate was on the edge of Great Ayton and so a logical addition to the settlement and the land owner had offered the tenants of School Farm an alternative to their main farm shop.

Hambleton District Council refused permission partly on the basis that it was an “unsustainable” development on a greenfield site. This was because the location was outside the development limits and under the local development framework, new homes had to reduce the need to travel by car and ensure existing infrastructure and facilities were not overloaded.

But an appeal document lodged by Gladman Developments states that while it does not dispute that that proposed site lies outside the existing settlement boundary, it does believe the development is sustainable.

It states: “The appellant will demonstrate the appeal site represents a suitable and sustainable location for residential development.”

No date has yet been set for an appeal hearing.