Hookstone Chase


We achieved consent for much-needed homes on brownfield land in Harrogate after Planning Committee voted in favour. Our evidence-based approach was key to success.

Justifying a change of use

Justifying the loss of employment land can often pose a series of complex challenges and a weak argument can see proposals refused by fervent planning committee members.

However, Planning Potential’s Harrogate office has recently achieved outline consent for homes on employment land, presenting a case that demonstrated adverse impacts from losing the potential opportunity for continued employment use were outweighed by the absence of a five-year land supply.

Focusing on market signals, the need for new housing and the opportunity to redevelop a brownfield site, we put forward a cogent case that conveyed the wider context, reaffirming the applicant’s commitment to Harrogate and their intention to get the houses built swiftly if permission was granted.

We also identified other key factors to support our case, including the local economic benefits though construction as well as the removal of commercial activity on land which immediately adjoined a housing estate. This resonated with Committee members, who saw this as an excellent opportunity to boost the supply of housing in a sustainable location.

Robust evidence underpinned and informed

Our experience told us that gathering comprehensive marketing evidence to demonstrate that the site was deemed unsuitable for future employment uses would be fundamental to the success of this application. We presented this evidence clearly and transparently, keeping the Council regularly up-to-date on the marketing campaign.

Planning Potential also engaged with local residents, speaking to many of them during the planning process. Not shying away from criticism, we took on board their comments and proposed a number of amendments, which met both residents and viability requirements. We also worked closely with the Council to allay amenity concerns, altering the site layout.

The application was referred to Harrogate Council’s Planning Committee with a recommendation for approval by officers. Members of the committee voted in favour of the scheme and recognised the applicant’s commitment to working with the Council and local residents.

If you would like to speak to us about the granting of residential planning permission on employment sites, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Summary of achievements

  • Worked closely with the Local Planning Authority at all stages of the application
  • Gathered and presented robust marketing evidence
  • Garnered a positive relationship with local residents