Askham Bog saved! Campaigners celebrate after government throws out 500 homes plan

The government has turned down plans for more than 500 homes to be built on land off Moor Lane – next to Askham Bog.

City of York Council’s planning committee turned the plans down, but the developer appealed the decision and a planning inquiry was held at the end of last year.

Today it was revealed that the planning inspector sided with the council – and the campaign to stop the development going ahead has been successful.

The Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, which campaigned tirelessly against the development, said:

  • Victory for Askham Bog!

    The Secretary of State agreed that the appeal should be dismissed. Askham Bog can continue to thrive for wildlife and for people, for years to come!

    We are overjoyed! Together we have made this happen – a heartfelt thank you.

Sir David Attenborough backed the campaign to help save the nature reserve and called on “all those who love the natural world” to help fight the plans to build homes next to the York bog.

He said: “I am absolutely delighted that such a treasure has been saved.”

Delighted by the result

Yorkshire Wildlife Trust chief executive Rob Stoneman shows Sir David Attenborough round Askham Bog nature reserve. Photograph: Tom Marshall, Yorkshire Wildlife Trust

Mr Sturdy said: “In these difficult times I am delighted to report some good news for everyone who cares about the local environment here in York.

“Local people have been unanimous in their opposition to the development proposals near Askham Bog. The campaign has attracted national attention, including from Sir David Attenborough who rightly described the site as ‘irreplaceable’.

“My thanks go to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust who have been instrumental in informing the debate about the potential ecological damage to the SSSI and to everyone who has made representations at both a local and national level.

“The work to conserve Askham Bog goes on and I hope that this news means it will remain a special place for generations to come.”

Speaking to Minster FM Dringhouses and Woodthorpe city councillor Ashley Mason said: “The impact it would have had on Askham Bog, the impact it would have had on local residents, in terms of infrastructure and traffic – it was just the wrong place for this kind of development.”

And he praised Sir David and others for their support.

“He was great in helping to really raise the profile. The support from the wildlife trust and others has really been invaluable.”

His fellow ward councillor Steven Fenton said: “Today’s news will come as a huge relief for local residents who had considerable concerns about the impact that this number of homes would have had on local infrastructure such as roads and healthcare services which are already struggling.

“It has been an incredible community effort, with residents rallying to the cause and the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust collecting over 7,000 petition signatures. I would like to thank everyone who has been part of this campaign.”