A multi-million pound scheme to build the biggest tourist accommodation centre yet on the North Yorkshire Coast has been vetoed by planners.
Yorkshire Ventures wants to build a complex of 64 forest lodges, 72 apartments, and 64 cottages at the Raithwaite Estate near Sandsend.
But planning officers at the North York Moors National Park have objected because the stone cottages which would be on the highest part of the prime site, would have an adverse impact on the landscape.
They also say the development would have “an adverse impact on irreplaceable woodland habitats” especially bats.
A report to the park planning committee says that while the plan is outside the National Park boundary the authority has been consulted by the borough council because the park boundary runs through the grounds of the top luxury Raithwaite Hall Hotel.
“There are a large number of local objections to the proposal, primarily due to the level of the proposed development and resultant levels and traffic” says the report.
“While the majority of the development would not have an unacceptable visual impact on the character and setting of the park, it is considered that the development of the hilltop part of the site and the harm to woodland and ecology that is likely to result, would have an unacceptable impact on the landscape character of the National Park and consequently, a strong objection should be made.”
Park planners add: “The development is substantial in scale and is set in a location surrounded by the National Park. There would be a loss of ancient woodland. New planting, hedgerows, management of retained woodland and adoption of sensitive construction techniques do not alter the fundamental issue regarding loss or deterioration of irreplaceable habitats.”
In addition to the accommodation schemes, Yorkshire Ventures say they also plan to provide a swimming pool, gymnasium, tennis court, restaurant, crèches and shop as well as car parking, roads and footpaths. Scarborough Council’s planning and development committee is expected to make a decision shortly.