People in Helmsley have five weeks to offer their views on a new blueprint for the market town which outlines the opportunities for housing and employment up to the year 2027.
Any comments received on the Helmsley Plan will be submitted to a Government planning inspector for examination before it is formally adopted.
The plan has been prepared by the North York Moors National Park Authority and Ryedale District Council.
Those who wish to make responses to the plan will need to consider whether they feel it meets the criteria the planning inspector will use to determine if the plan is ‘sound’.
There are four tests the plan needs to meet:
* Is the plan positively prepared? Does it meet local needs for housing, employment, education and leisure?
* Is it justified? Has the local community been able to participate in the plan and is the chosen strategy the best one compared with other alternatives considered?
* Is it effective? Is it clear how the plan will be delivered and monitored? Have all the organisations who need to deliver the plan signed up to it?
* Is it consistent with national policy as set out in the National Planning Policy Framework?
In July last year, residents, businesses and other organisations gave their views on a draft plan that identified five preferred sites in Helmsley for new housing, two for economic growth and one for an extra care facility for people over 55 years of age.
The latest version of the plan contains more detail about these sites to address the concerns raised.
Caroline Skelly, Planning Policy Officer at the North York Moors National Park Authority, said: “I would like to thank everyone who took the time to give their views last summer and assure people that these comments have been carefully considered in the final version of the Helmsley Plan. The proposals will enable Helmsley to continue as a thriving market town and community. It will allow the town to grow to meet local housing and employment needs but without harming it’s distinctive character.” The Helmsley Plan can be viewed at the authority’s Helmsley office; The Moors National Park Centre, Danby; Sutton Bank National Park Centre; Ryedale House, Malton; Helmsley Library; and www.northyorkmoors.org.uk.
Comments must be submitted by March 7 at 4.30pm.