Page last updated at 12:25 GMT, Thursday, 4 February 2010

Terry's site development in York approved

Former Terry's factory
The new development could create about 2,500 jobs

Councillors have approved the multi million-pound redevelopment of a former chocolate factory in York.

Developer Grantside plans to build homes, hotels, shops, a bar and restaurant, a medical centre and nursery at the Bishopthorpe Road site.

The city council rejected Grantside's initial plan last year.

The company said the development could lead to the creation of 2,500 jobs. Construction work is expected to start later this year.

In a report to the council's planning committee, planning officers recommended that the scheme should be approved.

Fourteen of the committee's 16 councillors voted in favour of the development. One voted against it and the other abstained.

This demonstrates without question that York is open for business
Council leader Andrew Waller

The report said the economic, social and environmental benefits of the new scheme "significantly outweigh" any possible disadvantages.

It said Grantside had gone back to the drawing board after its initial plan was rejected over traffic concerns.

The officers' report said the new plan was "fundamentally different" in that it featured residential and community uses on the northern part of the site, with employment uses mainly towards the centre of the site and to the south of the factory building.

'Important opportunity'

Officers said it represented "one of the largest and most important regeneration opportunities in the city of York in recent years".

City of York Council leader Andrew Waller welcomed the decision.

"This demonstrates without question that York is open for business," he said.

Mr Waller said the rejection of the original application had been "a millstone" round his neck for the last 18 months and came at a time when the city was trying to attract investment.

Kraft Foods closed the factory in September 2005, bringing to an end more than a century of chocolate making in York by Terry's, which began production in 1886.

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