More than three quarters of people who attended the most recent showcasing event for plans to transform Flaxby’s disused golf course into a new sustainable community creating new homes and jobs, support the development.
In addition, an overwhelming majority of people who came to the event at The Dower House in Knaresborough also prefer it over the Hammerton/Cattal broad location proposals for a new settlement, which have been submitted by Harrogate Borough Council in its Draft Local Plan.
The plan is currently being scrutinised by an Independent Inspector before being examined in public in early 2019. Flaxby Park Ltd. submitted its plans for 2,750 high quality homes with a charming village centre, alongside a retirement village, two primary schools, a GP surgery, sports facilities and a hotel last year. The developer is now waiting to put its case forward to the Draft Local Plan Inspector, who will make the final decision, when the public examination hearings commence.
Attendees included local residents from Knaresborough, Harrogate and the surrounding villages, as well as people from the local business community. Chris Musgrave from Flaxby Park Ltd, who is the developer behind the successful Wynyard Park mixed use 885 acre scheme near Middlesbrough, said: “What’s interesting about these results is that the support for our scheme is not only from those living in Hammerton who don’t want the development built there, but from people from the HG3, HG5, HG2 and YO51 postcode areas. Although some residents from Flaxby and Coneythorpe have concerns about our plans, which is to be expected, the overriding feedback we’re receiving is that Harrogate Borough Council have made a huge mistake in their preference for Hammerton/Cattal over Flaxby.
“At the event we ran last month at Bettys in Harrogate, 100% of attendees wanted to see Flaxby Park being built. In total almost 200 people came to the two events and the vast majority of people are surprised and concerned that Flaxby Park has been overlooked, considering its ideal location right next to the A1 and opposite the new Flaxby Green Business Park. We have now undertaken five community consultation events, attracting almost 1,000 attendees in total, and the message we are being given by the community at large has repeatedly been the same.
“Furthermore, Flaxby received almost twice the level of support compared to the Green Hammerton/Cattal location when the Council consulted on which was the most appropriate location for the new settlement, during the preparation of the Draft Local Plan.
“Our plans to re-open Goldsborough railway station and build a 350 car park and ride were also welcomed. Our sustainable and environmentally friendly credentials really set us apart. With bus routes, cycle routes, almost 50% green space, a business park over the road and a railway station – we are ticking every box. We are also in positive talks with the Allerton Waste Recovery Park about reusing waste heat from their incinerator to our site and potentially the business park opposite which has attracted significant backing.”
Neil Morton from planning consultancy Savills said: “We are now preparing to make our case for Flaxby at the public examination by demonstrating that the Draft Local Plan is flawed.”
Michael Wildblood MBE, of architecture practice Wildblood Macdonald, said: “The reality is that only a very small minority of people want to see the new settlement built around Hammerton/Cattal. Flaxby Park’s location and the developer’s commitment to public transport make perfect sense. With backing from the Harrogate Chamber of Commerce and support from the Harrogate Line Supporters Group who want to see Goldsborough railway station re-opened, we have attracted huge support from so many people. It’s a sensible proposal that that will help meet the housing needs of the Harrogate District and hopefully sense will prevail.”
For further information about Flaxby Park visit www.flaxbypark.com