Named: Ryedale villages facing ruin over North Yorkshire housing plans that will turn rural idylls into Leeds, York and Middlesbrough ‘commuter towns’ – Yorkshire Post Letters

From: Coun Simon Thackray, Member for the Sinnington Ward, Ryedale District Council, and member of Air Quality Steering Group.

Are too many houses proposed for North Yorkshire villages like Thornton le Dale?
Are too many houses proposed for North Yorkshire villages like Thornton le Dale?

Ryedale District Council is currently consulting on changes to the Local Plan that will over-develop our largest villages and, conversely, apply a tourniquet to our smallest village communities which will starve them of new blood and the oxygen for life.

I urge, therefore, our small village communities to rise up and come together in defence of their future.

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Our small Ryedale communities are yet again under attack while huge housing development is being proposed in our larger, so-called “service villages”.

Are too many houses proposed for Ryedale villages like Hovingham?

Land for up to 2,500 houses has been submitted to the council and is being considered for the wholesale expansion (decimation) of the communities of Amotherby and Swinton, Ampleforth, Beadlam, Nawton, Hovingham, Rillington, Sherburn, Sheriff Hutton, Slingsby, Staxton and Willerby and Thornton le Dale.

Similar large volumes of new housing is being considered for Malton and Norton, which are already bursting under the strain of new developments. Of note, Slingsby has yet to record any new housing proposals and while I feel I should not reveal from whence they might come, my fellow councillors and I are advised that a significant housing submission is on its way.

These dreadful plans can be found on the Ryedale District Council website. Plans of the “service villages” showing the land under consideration for new housing development are available online to study.

If you want your village to become a commuter village for York, Leeds or Middlesbrough, and its character to change beyond recognition, sit on your hands and watch the service villages explode.

Sheriff Hutton is among the areas earmarked for new housing.

If you do not, I urge you to exercise your democratic right and say what you think – now. Don’t wait until it is too late. You have until March 18.

My personal view is that new housing in Ryedale, when it happens, should be distributed fairly and equitably across all our villages and towns in order to support sustainable, vibrant and healthy rural communities and to protect our towns from further over-development and air pollution.

Despite all best efforts to promote Malton as the food capital of Yorkshire, it still stinks of sewage, the drains don’t work and the breathable air is polluted with nitrogen dioxide at a concentration twice the World Health Organisation global air quality guidelines. Not exactly the bouquet our food tourists are looking for.

Ryedale District Council website has all the links to the plans and consultation documents you need to respond.

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