Ellie Ames 07 September 2023

Prioritise social housing, Whitby tells North Yorkshire

Prioritise social housing, Whitby tells North Yorkshire image
Image: allouphoto / Shutterstock.com

Whitby Town Council is calling on the unitary authority of North Yorkshire to favour social housing developments over private building projects within Whitby’s parish boundaries.

At a full council meeting, Whitby’s members voted unanimously in favour of a motion urging North Yorkshire Council to ‘actively use its planning and economic development powers to prioritise social, cooperative and council housing developments, instead of major private building projects’ over the next ten years.

Cllr Michael Harrison, who proposed the motion, said: ‘This is a bold statement of intent from Whitby residents to the unitary authority of North Yorkshire, that the wishes of the Whitby town people must be listened to.

‘I earnestly urge the unitary authority to do so.’

Cllr Asa Jones, who seconded the motion, said: ‘I think we need to say to this new council, you have to pay attention and actually do something about all this.’

It was announced in July 2021 that North Yorkshire County Council and the seven district and borough councils in the area would be replaced by a single unitary council for North Yorkshire in April 2023.

The leader of North Yorkshire Council, Cllr Carl Les, said: ‘Whitby Town Council raises an important concern. The solution lies in two plans that the new council has to develop now it has been created.

‘The first is the local plan, which will govern how developments are delivered. Until then, we have to follow the existing local plan inherited from Scarborough Borough Council.

‘The second is a new housing strategy, the consultation on which was launched yesterday. Both these plans are interlinked.

‘We are happy to engage with Whitby Town Council and other communities where a lack of affordable housing is a concern.’

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