200 attend rally to fight housing plan

Part of the proposed site for up to 450 homes. (Picture - Adrian Murray)
Part of the proposed site for up to 450 homes. (Picture - Adrian Murray)

A campaign group to fight plans to build hundreds of homes on the south-west edge of Ripon has been formed after 200 people met to voice their concerns.

The meeting, organised by Independent councillors in the city to discuss Cheshire-based Gladman Developments’ plans for up to 450 homes in fields south of Whitcliffe Lane, was held at Greystone Primary School last week.

Speaking after the meeting, Coun Peter Horton (Ind) said: “It was a very successful meeting with around 100 people agreeing to display posters and signs objecting to the development.

“The strength of feeling is that this is not a suitable site and it should not go forward as a building development.”

Gladman Developments was told by Harrogate Borough Council’s Chief Planner last month that an Environmental Impact Assessment needs to be carried out on its proposals for the scheme at the site south of Whitcliffe Lane and west of West Lane before any planning application is submitted.

Among the issues of concern raised by members of the public at the meeting were the effects on access roads, increased traffic, school places and the encroachment on the open countryside.

Also at the meeting, a steering group of around 10 people was formed to spearhead the campaign against the proposed development once a planning application is submitted.

Coun Horton said: “There was definitely a feeling among the whole of the people attending that we must fight this and not let it go forward.”

Gladman Developments has declined to comment on its proposals until the company has submitted its planning application for the 23-hectare site, which is currently used for agriculture and horse riding.