Harrogate Borough Council have voted by a majority to adopt the Harrogate District Local Plan.
The decision was made at a full Council Meeting on 4 March 2020, following over 2-hours of debate and questions from the public. The consultation process started in 2016 with the release of the first draft local plan.
The District Local Plan includes:
- Policies to guide development
- Sites for new homes and jobs
- Options for a new settlement for the district
- Allocations for Local Green Space
- Development limits for settlements
Some of the comments from the meeting:
- The local plan was needed to ensure development in the most appropriate area. A number of Councillors noted that they had development in their wards, that would have been rejected if a local plan was in place.
- HBC Legal advised that the financial gain that NYCC will make from Green Hamerton was not in any way part of the decision process.
- HBC Legal advised of the risk of not adopting a local plan, in that NYCC may be asked to put one together or Government themselves, that had happened in other areas.
- A number of Councillors said that they agreed with the plan in principle, but felt the development had gone too far in their wards, the Army Barracks land in Ripon was mentioned as an example.
- Public question challenged if their had been sufficient visibility in the process.
- Councillors acknowledged the work that had been put into the plan by other Councillors and HBC Officers.
- A public question challenged the build quota buffer being too high, Rebecca Burnett, Cabinet Member for Planning, said they had interpreted the figures wrongly and offered clarification outside the meeting.
- This is part of a process of developing a draft plan, consultation, publishing, submission to Planning Inspectorate and adoption.
The process has had many iterations of review and update. Land allocations have been challenged as part of that process, but most notably the land allocation for a new settlement. Green Hammerton, as against Flaxby, was chosen as the preferred site for a settlement and has been opposed by many Green Hammerton throughout the process.