D-day for Dacre Banks homes plan

The main street through Dacre Banks.
The main street through Dacre Banks.

A plan to build 16 new houses in the village of Dacre Banks is set to go before Harrogate Borough Council’s planning committee next week.

Previous plans for 20 houses on land surrounding Abbots Garage were withdrawn in 2011 after complaints the development was too large.

This latest plan has won the support of Dacre Parish Council and the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the plans are recommended for approval.

Dacre Parish Council had said in 2011 that it thought plans at the time for 20 houses were “about 25 per cent over-intensified”, and has supported the new plans for 16 houses.

County Coun John Fort (Con, Pateley Bridge) sits on the parish council. He said: “They have taken on board what we have said, I think this is a suitable development.”

The AONB manager, Paul Burgess, said: “The AONB’s Joint Advisory Committee did not object to the withdrawn application because the benefits of the affordable housing outweighed the harm that their construction may have caused to the character of the village and wider landscape. We do not see any reason to change this position.”

The plans indicate that six houses will be affordable housing.

Coun Fort said: “We welcome development in the area, and we welcome some affordable housing as part of that scheme.

“Some of our housing should be affordable, to help young people buy houses.”

In 2011 a council report found that there was a need for 28 new affordable homes in Upper Nidderdale.

Drainage issues are a concern for a number of consultees. Coun Fort explained: “It is a damp piece of land so the drainage needs to be dealt with.”

Harrogate Borough Council’s drainage engineer has suggested that mitagation measures are imposed and asked that the design “should ensure that storm water resulting from a one in 100 year event can be stored on site without risk to people or property”.

Resident Elaine Wild has written to the council to object to the plans because of traffic worries.

She said: “There is already an overload of heavy traffic at certain times of the day running through this small 
village. More traffic will indeed become contentious.

“There appears to be an access road across from Weeton House where the view of oncoming traffic in both directions is severely restricted. This is a recipe for disaster and accidents are inevitable.”

Despite these concerns, North Yorkshire County Council has raised no objections to the plans.

Although the land has not been identified in Harrogate Council’s draft local plan, a lack of five-year housing plan in the district means the plans are recommended for approval.

Council planning officer Andy Hough said: “In the absence of a five-year housing land supply the council must consider national planning advice advice, which creates a presumption in favour of sustainable development.”

“The broad land use principle of development is considered acceptable and represents the sustainable growth of the village.”

l See next weeks Nidderdale Herald for the outcome of the meeting.