SKIPTON residents are being asked for their views on a proposed major new housing estate of around 140 homes.

The 'concept plan' for 'Hawbank Field' between Knaresborough Road and Otley Road features a mixture of house types, including affordable.

There will also be public open space and a play area and access will be off Knaresborough Road, at the top of The Bailey, with additional pedestrian right of way to the neighbouring Greenacre estate.

The Leeds based planning consultants, the Pegasus Group, says it is welcoming comments until tomorrow (Friday) after which it will consider responses before submitting an outline planning application to Craven District Council.

The application, if approved, would establish the principle of the development. It could then be followed by a detailed application at a later date.

In its leaflet delivered to residents, Pegasus, on behalf of the landowner, says the scheme will help fulfil a growing national need for more housing.

And while it is the council which will decide on the planning application, it is encouraging people in the area to be 'part of the development process'.

"We are sharing our concept plan as a basis for discussion and are asking people who live and or work in the area to help us continue to shape the proposals prior to the submission of a planning application," it says.

It says the just more than 21 acre site is well connected to the road network and it can be developed sensitively to not have an adverse impact on the surroundings.

Richard Colley, who lives in Gargrave Road, denies there is a need for more housing in Skipton.

"Surely, with all the recent and approved future new housing developments in and around the town, Skipton will have done more than its fair share of contributing to this national problem - the indigenous population of Skipton can't possibly be reproducing this quickly," he said.

"Not only would this proposed new development exacerbate the existing local shortage of doctors, hospitals, and school places, but it will also add to the parking problems in the town, being further from the town centre than most people will consider to be convenient walking distance. Hopefully these are good enough reasons not to approve any more sizeable new developments like this in the near future."

The plan can be viewed online at Comments need to be made before Friday. If a planning application is submitted to Craven District Council, the council will carry out its own statutory consultation.