List of YWT Nature Reserves (A-Z)


Sign up to our monthly e-newsletter


 Or opt into another list

Family Fun - latest news and events
Learning - for teachers and community group leaders


Wildlife and rare ancient habitat SAVED from proposed Whitby holiday village development as proposal REJECTED

Thursday 7th September 2017

Brown long-eared bat. Credit: Tom MarshallBrown long-eared bat. Credit: Tom Marshall

*UPDATE* 07 September 2017: Development proposal REJECTED: Yorkshire Wildlife Trust Conservation Officer Sara Robin who has led on the Trust's objection to the proposal was present at the Planning meeting at which the decision to refuse permission for the development was made. On hearing the news Sara said: "Yorkshire Wildlife Trust is delighted that the Scarborough Borough Council Planning Committee has decided not to give planning permission for the holiday village development at The Raithwaite Estate. The development had the potential to be very damaging to Ancient Woodland, wildlife and the landscape of the North York Moors National Park and the Heritage Coast. We commend the Councillors' decision as they have recognised that nature matters and how we should be working to create a living landscape in North Yorkshire and not destroying it."

Original news story:

29 August 2017

Wildlife and rare ancient habitat at threat from proposed Whitby holiday village development

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust has written to councillors on the Scarborough Planning Committee highlighting its concerns to a major and very damaging development proposed at the Raithwaite Estate, north of Whitby.

The plans for a new £40 million holiday village, submitted on behalf of Harrogate-based Yorkshire Ventures (Estates) Ltd, include the building of 64 cottages, 72 apartments and 64 forest lodges, along with a restaurant and leisure facilities.

Central to the Trust's objections is the fact that the development will be almost entirely in areas which are very important for wildlife, including an essentially irreplaceable Ancient Woodland habitat which, once damaged or destroyed, takes hundreds of years to recover or for replacement woodland to develop. Parts of the application site are also shown to be within a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC), which is designated by Scarborough Council due to the value of the area for wildlife and nature in Scarborough district.

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust's Conservation Officer Sara Robin said "We are very concerned that Scarborough District Council may give planning permission at the September Planning Committee meeting for this development.

"The council will need to be certain that the benefits of the application will be sufficient to outweigh the loss of the Ancient Woodland. The woodland around the North York Moors is particularly important for bats which are very sensitive to the effects of lighting and disturbance. A bat survey for the site revealed evidence of five bat species and possible indication that Serotine bats may use the woodland. If so, this could be first record of this rare bat species in North Yorkshire and the most northerly record in the UK."

In raising its objections, the Trust has also voiced concern that the development could lead to deterioration of the bathing water quality at Sandsend beach as a result of the potential for pollution.

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust first lodged a formal objection in February and has now written to councillors highlighting its concerns ahead of September's planning meeting at which it anticipates the development will be considered.

The proposal has thus far attracted almost 1000 objections from across the local community and further afield.

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust is encouraging people to attend the forthcoming Planning and Development Committee Meeting on Thursday 7 September at 1pm, Scarborough Town Hall, St Nicholas Street, Scarborough. Members of the public do not need to register to attend and can just turn up on the day.

Full details of the proposals are available on the Scarborough Borough Council planning website - application reference 16/02555/FL