Campaigner plans his own survey into homes plan

Stanley Mackintosh on Bondgate Green in Ripon with the view of Ripon Cathedral he fears will be lost.  (1503104AM1)
Stanley Mackintosh on Bondgate Green in Ripon with the view of Ripon Cathedral he fears will be lost. (1503104AM1)

A Ripon man who fears a new development at the former Jewson site in Ripon will block views of the city’s cathedral is set to take matters into his own hands.

Despite Harrogate Borough Council giving planning permission last month for the site on Bondgate Green to be demolished and replaced with housing, Stanley Mackintosh, of Kirkgate, believes a photo montage submitted by the applicant does not show the full extent to which views of the cathedral from the street will be blocked.

He is now planning to take a cherry picker outside the site on Wednesday, March 18, and erect a “ridge target” to illustrate the height of the proposed homes and take photographs to indicate how much of the cathedral view will be blocked by the housing. He has been refused access to the site by building firm N C Wilson Ltd of Grewelthorpe which owns the site.

Mr Mackintosh said: “I appeal to the owner to reconsider.

“If photo-montages submitted with this application – as required by English Heritage – are a true representation of an acceptable effect of the proposed new row of street houses upon statutorily-protected views of our Grade I listed cathedral then this survey exercise will vindicate that position.

“If the survey was to confirm that one or more of the pivotal photo-montages were incorrect, the applicant would be able to temporarily withdraw the application and in consultation with local residents and statutory bodies re-submit an acceptable alternative layout for planning consent.”

But when contacted by the Gazette, N C Wilson Ltd said it would not be co-operating with Mr Mackintosh’s proposed action.

A spokesman for the company said: “Harrogate Borough Council has come to a decision. All councillors supported the application, including English Heritage and Ripon City Council, therefore we feel we don’t need to do anything further.”

As previously reported, a number of people signed a petition against the proposals which were passed by a meeting of Harrogate Borough Council’s planning committee on Tuesday, February 17.