SIR - As councillor representing Skipton North which includes most of Skipton Town Centre, I am concerned at two recent developments.

First, the proposed closure of Rackhams would clearly be a big loss to our town centre.

I am pleased that our Craven Council leader, Richard Foster, has written to the House of Fraser Chief Executive asking for a reconsideration.

He argues rightly that our High Street is thriving with few empty units, an award winning market and excellent footfall from locals and visitors.

We are bucking the trend and this should be taken into account by House of Fraser.

If the closure does go ahead, these same arguments should help attract others to use the space left by Rackhams.

I am sure that Craven Council and Skipton Town Council will work with others including the landlord to this end.

Second, the owners of Craven Court have submitted a planning application to build retail units and apartments on Otley Street, Skipton.

This would be disastrous, destroying an important open green space in the town centre, impacting adversely on neighbours, and ruining the attractive rear entrance and staircase into Craven Court.

It is a strange application, bearing in mind the difficulty the owners have always had filling the units inside Craven Court.

Further, no parking provision is proposed for the retail units or apartments, even though there is no on-street parking in the vicinity. There have already been very many objections to this development and I hope the owners will now reconsider.

Cllr John Dawson (Skipton North), Craven District and Skipton Town Councils, Gainsborough Court, Skipton