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Policies and Plans

Staithes by Mike KiplingStaithes by Mike Kipling

Applications for planning permission are primarily considered against policies set out in the 'development plan' for the North York Moors National Park. This is made up of any formal planning documents that have been through a period of consultation and testing, and have been subsequently formally adopted by the National Park Authority.

The North York Moors National Park's development plan currently comprises the Local Plan 2020, the Whitby Business Park Area Action Plan and the Helmsley Plan. Links to each are provided below.

If you would like to be kept in touch about development of our planning policies please complete the Mailing List Form or email us at

The Local Plan (2020)

The Authority adopted the Plan at its National Park Authority/AGM meeting on 27 July 2020.

View the Local Plan

View the North York Moors Interactive Local Plan Policies Map.

More detail on the preparation of the Local Plan can be found on the Local Plan page.

Local Development Scheme

The Local Development Scheme sets out a three-year programme of work for the production of documents that will make up the Local Development Framework for the National Park.

It reviews progress and revises the timescales for each document based on the assessment in the Annual Monitoring Report, which monitors the progress made towards the timescales that are set out in the Local Development Scheme.

A revised Local Development Scheme was adopted by the Authority in July 2018 for a programme of work covering the period 2017-35.

The Local Development Scheme 2018


Local Plan Annual Monitoring Reports and Infrastructure Funding Statements can be found on the monitoring page.

View the Monitoring Page

The North Yorkshire, York and North York Moors Minerals and Waste Joint Plan

The National Park Authority formally adopted a new Minerals and Waste Joint Plan on 21 March 2022.

View the Minerals and Waste Joint Plan

More detail on the preparation of the Local Plan can be found on the Minerals and Waste Joint Plan page.

Statement of Community Involvement

The Authority is required to produce a Statement of Community Involvement under the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004. The Statement of Community Involvement sets out how the Authority intends to involve the community in the preparation, alteration and review of parts of the Local Development Framework and in taking decisions on planning applications. A new Statement of Community Involvement called 'Involving People in Planning' was adopted in 2018.

Involving People in Planning

Whitby Business Park Area Action Plan (2014)

Responsibility for planning at Whitby Business Park lies with both Scarborough Borough Council and the National Park Authority as the National Park boundary runs through the site. In order to provide a consistent and long term plan for the site, a Joint Area Action Plan has been adopted by the two authorities.

The Plan sets out how the Business Park will be developed over the period to 2026. It includes proposals to improve and expand the existing site to accommodate new businesses and sets out highway, infrastructure and environmental improvements. The area covered is the existing built up area of the Business Park together with the land allocated for expansion and the area falls within the Local Planning Authority areas of both Scarborough Borough Council and the National Park Authority.

The Area Action Plan was formally adopted by both Authorities in November 2014. Regulation 10A of the Town and Country Planning (Local Planning) (England) Regulations 2012 (as amended) now requires that Local Authorities review their local plans at least every five years from adoption to ensure policies remain relevant and effective. A review of whether the Area Action Plan remained up to date was carried out by both Authorities in the Autumn of 2019, the conclusion of which was that it remained fit for purpose. Details of that review can be found in a report to Planning Committee dated 17 October 2019.

Whitby Business Park Area Action Plan - Adopted Version November 2014

Whitby Business Park Design Brief

Sustainability Statement

Adoption Statement 

Helmsley Plan (2015)

The town of Helmsley is split between the Local Planning Authorities of Ryedale District Council and the North York Moors National Park Authority. The two authorities have jointly prepared the Helmsley Plan, which allocates sufficient land to meet both the housing and employment requirements for the town up to 2027. It also contains a suite of policies to guide various forms of development and to manage change at the town.

The Helmsley Plan has been assessed by an Independent Inspector who concluded that the Helmsley Plan satisfies the requirements of Section 20(5) of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 (as amended) and meets the criteria for soundness in the National Planning Policy Framework.

Inspector's Report

The Helmsley Plan was formally adopted by the North York Moors National Park Authority on 23 July 2015.

Adopted Helmsley Plan 

Sustainability Statement 

Adoption Statement

Background information and the Evidence Base for the Helmsley Plan can be found on Ryedale District Council's website

Involving People in Planning

The Ingleby Arncliffe Neighbourhood Plan (2021)

The Parish of Ingleby Arncliffe have produced a Neighbourhood Plan for that Parish. Only a very small area (The Blue Bell Inn, two cottages and the modern farm buildings/grain store associated with Arncliffe Farm) is located within the National Park, the remainder being within the Hambleton District Council Local Planning Authority area.

Following independent examination the Parish voted 'yes' to wanting the Plan to be used for decision making on planning applications. Accordingly the Authority formally adopted the Plan  as part of its Development Plan on 2 December 2021.

The Plan and more details on its preparation are on Hambleton District Council's website here:

Ingleby Arncliffe Neighbourhood Plan

Sub Regional Spatial Framework

The Local Authorities across York, North Yorkshire, East Riding and Hull (YNYERH) have recognised the need to develop a broad framework that sets out an agreed view as to how sustainable growth could be facilitated across the sub region over the medium to longer term, i.e. towards 2050 and beyond the current suite of Local Plans.

The Spatial Framework is a non-statutory document that outlines the vision and priorities for growth and the overall spatial strategy for the area. It will inform the next round of Local Plans in North Yorkshire.


Connected, distinctive and thriving towns and cities will help drive growth and support a successful, sustainable future for current and future generations. Whether living in a city, market town or in the countryside we want to support and deliver a better quality of life for people in the YNYERH area – through our approach to growth and infrastructure planning.

Three sectoral priorities have been identified: Digital, Environment and Transport.

The Spatial Framework will bring a number of benefits. It will:

  • Support better infrastructure delivery with the achievement of greater levels of sustainable economic growth
  • Provide a stronger case for investment, helping to make the spatial case for external funding for infrastructure investment where this is required to support growth.
  • Demonstrate more proactive collaboration across all the partner Local Authorities enabling them to work more effectively and efficiently in preparing and delivering their Local Plans and providing the market with more confidence to invest and grow.

The Spatial Framework provides an overall direction and coherence for the future of the YNYERH area whilst retaining the space and discretion for Local Plans to make their own allocations for development that take in to account local sustainability, viability, political and community factors.

Useful links and downloads

Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities website