Plans to build eight holiday apartments on site of Whitby cottages destroyed in 2012 landslide rejected by Scarborough Council

Plans to build holiday apartments on the site of a landslide that destroyed several Whitby cottages in 2012 has been refused by Scarborough Council.

By Anttoni James Numminen, Local Democracy Reporting Service
Friday, 8th July 2022, 10:01 am
The landslide on Aelfleda Terrace.
The landslide on Aelfleda Terrace.

A proposal to build eight new holiday lets on Aelfleda Terrace was rejected by Scarborough Council's Planning and Development Committee.

At its meeting on Thursday July 7, the planning committee refused the plans proposed by Kris Blake of AJ Builders (Hull), based on a need to preserve the “important views and vistas” in the area.

The committee also decided that as the application was for eight apartments – three more than were originally on the site – and there was a lack of proposed parking space in the area, this would be “detrimental to the safety and convenience of users of the public highway”.

The landslide impacted properties below the slip.

A council officer suggested that had the application been for five apartments instead of eight, the view of planning officers might have been more favourable.

Though the application received several objections from members of the public, the council’s engineers advised that the site was “generally safe for building” and that matters relating to slope stability “could be addressed by planning condition”

Speaking at the meeting, Cllr Bill Chatt, said: “It is a statement piece when you’re looking at it. It doesn’t fit in, you are right. But, a lot of things don’t fit in.

“And with Whitby’s need for housing, which is greater than anywhere else in the borough, I think that trying to get a couple more units in there wasn’t being greedy. I think it was trying to use land in a positive way.

Properties surrounding the landslide had to be demolished.

“I’m actually not against refusal of this, I would rather have passed it. But I won’t be agreeing to refuse it.”

Other members of the committee, including Cllr Sam Cross objected because the application stated the building would be for “holiday units”.

Cllr Cross told the committee: “Parking is a big problem in Whitby. And just for clarification, these are eight holiday homes. We’re not looking at five affordable homes.

“I could understand if they were affordable or if they would be useful to the residents of Whitby. But unfortunately, I think a lot of people would say there are enough holiday homes in Whitby… and we’ve seen this in the recent vote with the people of Whitby.”

In a recent referendum-style poll, Whitby residents overwhelmingly approved banning the sale of all new-build properties for second homes in a non-binding vote.

However, a council officer clarified that though the application had been “advanced on the basis” that they would be holiday homes, he added: “The form proposed eight open market dwellings, so ultimately, that’s what consent is sought for.

“But if the applicant got consent, he could let them for holiday purposes.”

In moving to a vote, all except two members of the committee were against the refusal of planning permission.