The ambitious project to relocate Malton’s historic livestock market have been given the go-ahead by Ryedale District Council’s Planning Committee.
Commercial Development Projects and the Fitzwilliam Trust Corporation now have outline planning permission for the development of a market and business park on land near Eden Camp, Old Malton, which will be partly funded by three separate applications to build around 300 homes in Malton and Old Malton - all of which were also given the green light on Thursday evening.
But councillors became embroiled in a spat over the plans to build only affordable housing on Rainbow Lane, Malton, with one likening it to a “ghetto policy” and another describing it as “social division.”
Ryedale District Council sets itself a target of having 33 per cent of all properties on sizeable developments to be classed as “affordable housing.”
However, the developers have said it is not viable to have affordable housing on The Showfield site in Pasture Lane, Malton, where they want to build 227 homes.
They had instead submitted an application for 50 affordable homes on Rainbow Lane.
Cllr Robert Wainwright said: “It seems to me that we are moving away from our accepted policy and now advocating a ‘ghetto policy.’ In other words, we are going to let the developer build selected bungalows and houses on this particular site and put the not so desirable houses on a not so desirable site.”
Planning manager Gary Housden said: “I have never planned a ghetto - and I shan’t start now. The viability suggests this scheme can’t deliver a single affordable house.
“Sometimes the view of affordable housing is that it is second class accommodation but when you look at the affordable housing we have provided around Ryedale that just isn’t the case.”
Councillor Lindsay Burr said “ghetto” was a “nasty word” for people living in affordable housing and Cllr Janet Frank added people who rented a house should not be stigmatised as there were many who could not afford to get on the housing ladder but who might do so later.
But Councillor Tommy Woodward said that while he would not call the Rainbow Lane scheme as a “ghetto,” it did amount to “social division.”
“To put all the affordable housing in one place may not be a ghetto but it is social division and it is disgraceful.”
The third of the applications for 35 homes on Westgate, Old Malton, was also criticised by local residents who fear the overall linked development would lead to an increased flooding risk, more traffic while they also questioned the need to build on green field sites.
However, this was disputed by planning officers who said the responses from all official consultees, including the Highways Agency and local drainage board, offered no objections to the schemes - subject to their conditions being followed.
Speaking after the meeting, Charles Vyvyan, from Commercial Development Projects and Mark Nicholson, agent to the Fitzwilliam Trust Corporation commented in a joint statement: “Clearly this is a major milestone for the project and we are delighted that the Council has approved these planning applications.
“This decision will result in a massive investment into Malton. The approval means that hundreds of new jobs will be created, secure the relocation of the livestock market, as well as offering much needed new housing.”
“The next steps are to draw up detailed plans for the new Livestock Market and get on site as soon as possible.”
And Derek Watson, a director of Malton and Ryedale Farmers Livestock Market Company, added: “Gaining outline planning approval is a massive achievement to relocate the market. We will now start to draw up detailed plans and work on the details of the new market.
“This will provide a real boost to Malton as the Livestock Market is integral to the town and wider area. The importance of a thriving market is crucial for Malton’s future and it will reinforce the town’s position as being food capital of the area.”