Harrogate development to generate over £450m for economy, report claims

Transforming a disused golf course at Flaxby into a major new sustainable village community could support over 240 full time construction jobs, up to 659 new employment opportunities and generate more than £453.8m for the local economy over the next 20 years, a report claims.

The planning application for Flaxby Park was submitted this month and will be available to view on Harrogate Borough Council’s website once registered.

It includes 2,750 homes, a retirement village, two primary schools, a GP surgery, sports facilities, a new village centre, as well as lots of open space.

There are also provisions to improve access at the entrance of the site, which already offers access to junction 47 of the A1(M).

In addition, the former Goldsborough Railway Station would be reopened, offering direct links to Leeds and York.

A detailed report, produced by real estate advisor GVA, highlights the economic benefits of the development, including how existing businesses in Knaresborough, as well as those at St James Retail Park, would benefit from increased footfall.

The development would extend the ‘Location for Major Employment Growth’ and significantly enhance the attractiveness and viability of Flaxby Green Park, which secured planning permission earlier this year, the report says.  The eco-friendly business park could support 2,840 jobs and would be within easy walking distance of neighbouring Flaxby Park.

Flaxby Park’s 430-acres were acquired in 2016 by Flaxby Park Ltd which is owned by Ann Gloag and regeneration experts Chris Musgrave and Trevor Cartner.

Musgrave says: “As well as creating a standout development to live in, that maximises its parkland setting, a key feature of Flaxby Park has always been about the vast economic benefits it will create.  These will include supporting more than 240 full time construction jobs, during the phased 20-year development plan, as part of a substantial investment that is estimated to exceed £400m.

“A key principle of our plan has focused on transport and Flaxby Park will certainly be a very convenient place to live for anyone working at Flaxby Green Park, as well as complementing the business park’s innovative credentials.  Our design will also see the reopening of the former Goldsborough Station, alongside a new park and ride scheme, which will greatly enhance public transport provision in the area.

“We’re delighted to have submitted our planning application, which incorporates lots of positive feedback from local people and stakeholders, and follows more than a year of discussions with Harrogate Borough Council.  The result is a truly exceptional development, in a stunning country park setting, that would bring major economic benefits to the surrounding area for decades to come.  It’s the right development in the right place and we are certainly ready to deliver.”

Flaxby Park has been designed by a team of consultants, including architects, Wildblood Macdonald.

A period of statutory consultation managed by Harrogate Borough Council will now begin, inviting local people and organisations another chance to share their opinions.