Great Ayton Farming Family’s Delight As Plans For 113 Homes Are Refused

11th February 2014

A farming family, along with much of the local community, are celebrating following the decision to reject an application, from developers Gladman, for 113 dwellings to be built at School Farm near Great Ayton.

Mark and Cathy Phalp with their family have occupied the farm for over 23 years and were facing the proposition of the farm buildings, stables and popular School Farm shop being demolished to make way for the proposed development of two to five bedroom properties.

Mark not only feared for the livelihood of his own family but also for those who would have lost their jobs should the scheme have been granted permission. The Phalps and the community of Great Ayton were also concerned about the wider impact of the development with Mark and Cathy instructing Maria Ferguson of George F White to act on their behalf following a recommendation.

Maria Ferguson representing the Phalp family worked with Mark and Cathy, also meeting with several members of the local community in opposition to the development, and spoke on their behalf at the Hambleton District Council planning committee meeting on Thursday 9th January 2014. Maria outlined to the planning committee that School Farm was not an appropriate site for residential development, that it was not a logical extension to the village and highlighted the significant highway, landscaping and drainage issues that would arise should the development proceed.

Representatives from the Parish Council and local Ward Member also spoke at the meeting also in opposition to the proposals. The community did their part submitting over 600 letters of objection to the local planning officers and launching a petition, social media campaign and dedicated website to rally support against the proposals.

Following the various representations the members of the planning committee voted unanimously to refuse the application for outline planning consent, to a round of applause from the 60 residents who attended the meeting.

Mr Phalp said: “I’m absolutely chuffed to bits. It was a common sense outcome really. That’s one hurdle out of the way – we just hope they won’t appeal the decision now”. In relation to the support from the local community Mark went on to say “It was standing room only at the meeting, there was a big turnout; we had so much support, I want to say a huge thank you to the whole village for getting behind us, they’ve been fantastic”.

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