PLANS to house six young people with behavioural and social difficulties in a Hambleton village have been opposed by a parish council over fears of anti-social behaviour and crime.
Hambleton District Council’s planning committee will on Thursday (August 21) discuss an application from the Priory Group, which also operates Hurworth House School, near Darlington, for a care home for children aged seven to 19 who are unable to attend mainstream school.
The agent for Priory Group said: “Hurworth House School is operated by the applicant and is a specialist school for children with behavioural, emotional, and social difficulties and autistic spectrum disorders.
“The site will not accommodate young persons with drug or alcohol problems or those with acute psychiatric illnesses.”
The site would also be registered with Ofsted where a safety and security regime would be in place.
While the application has been recommended for approval by Hambleton planning officers, Brompton Parish Council and North Yorkshire Police neighbourhood team oppose the plans.
North Yorkshire Police have warned that at similar centres in Northallerton and Derbyshire, criminal activity has affected the local community.
The Priory Group also runs the Eastwood Grange School in Derbyshire, from which North Yorkshire Police said in the last two years there had been 140 calls to police, and of those 104 were for missing persons.
At Prospect Place children’s home in Northallerton, there were reports anti-social behaviour, arson, and of neighbours being verbally abused.
The parish council’s main objections were on safety and disturbance grounds for village residents, arguing that there would be potential for a rise in anti-social behaviour and crime.
A spokesman from the parish council said: “The council is of the view that to grant the planning application would not be in the interests of the protection or safety of the residents of Brompton.”
Brompton police team said it could not support the application, which would bring a “fear of crime” to Brompton.
But planning officer Alex Peel said while the proposal is not welcomed by North Yorkshire Police or the parish council, it was not a reason to refuse the proposal.
She added: “It would be necessary to identify reasons why a care home in this location would give rise to problems that would not be expected elsewhere.
“The scale of the unit is relatively small and is unlikely to cause excessive levels of noise and disturbance above any other multiple occupancy home of this scale.”