A SMALL terraced house in Ingleton may be reserved for local affordable housing if a shared legal agreement can be drawn up by neighbouring local authorities.

The Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority approached Craven District Council with a view to entering into a joint agreement following a recent planning application.

The occupants of a house in New Road, Ingleton, were granted permission by the national park to covert a barn at Chapel-le-Dale into a dwelling and builder's workshop, subject to a legal agreement restricting future occupancy.

However, the planners recommended that the Ingleton house was also reserved for local housing and approved the application subject to such a legal agreement being drawn up.

Because the Ingleton property is outside the national park, the authority approached Craven District Council to see if a shared arrangement could be made.

At a meeting of the council's planning committee, chairman David Ireton suggested accepting the legal agreement.

"I feel that over the past three months this authority has been working very hard for local need housing and I would like to accept this. What we must do is keep it for local young people as a stepping stone onto the housing ladder.

"We should jump at the opportunity. Somewhere along the line we will be helping a young family here and we should work with the national park authority on this."

Concern was expressed by both authority's officers that the agreement could be challenged in five years time and the house sold to the highest bidder. However, councillors felt such an application would be refused if presented to the Secretary of State.

Coun Paul English said members should also ensure the national park was willing to share costs should an agreement be challenged in five years.

"I don't think Craven District Council should be left holding the baby on its own," he said.

The issue will now be discussed again at a future meeting of the national park authority