Decision on bid to build more than 500 homes near Askham Bog in York to be made by spring

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The Yorkshire Wildlife Trust thanked supporters on the final day of hearings over a controversial housing scheme near Askham Bog.

A planning inspector has been hearing about the development during a public inquiry at the Citadel on Gillygate for the past three weeks.

Askham Bog. Credit: James Hardisty

Askham Bog. Credit: James Hardisty

Discussions concluded on November 28, but the developer, Barwood, York Council and the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust will submit their closing statements by email.

And campaigners will have to wait until next year for a decision on the appeal.

A spokesman for the government planning inspectorate said: “Following the close of the inquiry the inspector will carefully consider all the evidence submitted.

“We expect he will send a report to the Secretary of State by February. The Secretary of State is likely to make a decision within three months of receiving the report.”

More than £28,000 was raised by residents to help the wildlife trust put together their case for the inquiry.

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Louise Wilkinson, from Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, thanked the team’s barristers and added: “We are so grateful for the donations because that’s what enabled us to put a really good case together.

“Thank you to all the people who have donated and stood with us. We are really mindful that it is people’s generosity and support that’s allowed us to get to this point.”

The council turned down plans for 516 homes to be built on land off Moor Lane near the Bog in July.

The planning committee took just over an hour to reject the proposals – saying it had concerns about the impact on the bog as well as transport in the area.

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust and more than 7,600 people objected to the plans. Sir David Attenborough also criticised the scheme.

But developer Barwood said the plans would help address York’ s “housing crisis” and decided to appeal the council’s decision.