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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 January, 2005, 15:50 GMT
Backing for Dales new homes plans
The Yorkshire Dales Park is a popular area for tourists
The Yorkshire Dales is popular with second-home buyers
Members of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority have backed plans to restrict the sale of new homes in the area to local residents.

But they have asked a working party to report on the details of how the policy would be implemented.

Plans to restrict the sale of new houses have already been backed by a government planning inspector.

There are 10,000 houses in the Dales which sell for an average price of about 240,000.

In his report, the inspector, William Carlow, agreed that any houses to be built within the national park in the future should meet demand from local people and be at more affordable prices.

The trouble is the people with holiday homes only come here now and again and maybe only a couple of times a year
Bernard Gibson
Speaking after the meeting in Hawes, authority member Kevin Lancaster said: "The inspector has said you can have local-only housing and you can have affordable housing and most of the committee are delighted with that."

Mr Lancaster, who was heavily involved in formulating plans, said he expected them to be given the go-ahead in August, although any builders seeking planning permission would now be subjected to the new guidelines.

The councillor said people who had lived in the national park for three years would be considered "local" and would be eligible to buy new homes in the park.

He added that estate agent signs would advertise the fact that some homes were for locals only.

'Ghost towns'

The plans to restrict the sales of new homes have been backed by some Dales residents.

Angus Carmichael, 41, a pharmacist in Hawes, said: "The sale of homes in the local area has become a bit of a thorny issue.

"During the foot-and-mouth outbreak a lot of local farm labourers moved to York and other towns to look for work but now they want to come back and they can't afford to because house prices have rocketed."

Bernard Gibson, 72, who has lived in the area for 15 years, said house prices had more than doubled in the last few years.

"The trouble is the people with holiday homes only come here now and again and maybe only a couple of times a year.

"On some streets now there is no-one living there full time and the villages are becoming like ghost towns."

How the Yorkshire Dales is tackling housing problems

Park to restrict Dales home sales
19 Jan 05 |  North Yorkshire
Park to ban 'second home sales'
07 Dec 04 |  North Yorkshire
Locals-only house sales welcomed
29 Nov 04 |  South West Wales
Call for more tax on second homes
16 Nov 04 |  Business

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