North Yorkshire County Council and Homes England plan to prepare three rural sites for development outside areas where District Councils have previously stated housing can be developed. This will help the area to meet affordable housebuilding targets.
The intention is to use the government-backed Accelerated Funding Programme to help develop sites that would otherwise not be viable for development.
The sites include three tenanted farms at Minskip, near Boroughbridge, Cliffe and Ryther in the Selby district.
The proposal at Cliffe is for 113 homes with a potential £770,520 profit, at Minskip 93 homes are planned with an anticipated profit of £3,978,440, the proposal at Ryther would be for 106 homes at a loss of £34,754.
The report comments that “Part of the virtue of the programme is in bringing sites forward for housing that would not otherwise be developed. We understand that selection criteria for the sites included their planning status – not being allocations in the local plans.
This could lead to potential conflict where for example, North Yorkshire would be supporting Harrogate Borough Council to bring forward development within the parameters of their Local Plan, and at the same time promoting a site outside of the plan.
It will be important to stress the wider economic benefits of the programme and the exceptional circumstances in bringing the sites forward.”
Since 2014 North Yorkshire County Council has generated more than £12 from the sale of land and property assets. These included farms and office buildings, some of which were sold for between £1 and £10 to cut costs to the taxpayer.
Thomas Stainthorpe commented that “It is fantastic to hear that much needed development opportunities will bring more affordable housing to North Yorkshire and that land otherwise not being used could be repurposed as housing opportunities.”