A SMALL barn adjacent to the village green at Finkle Street, in Malham, can be converted into a takeaway refreshment kiosk the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority’s Planning Committee decided on Tuesday, July 14.

Kirkby Malhamdale Parish Council reported that there had been a high level of concern in Malham about the application for several reasons. These included wanting to protect the village green and any increase in car parking.

It stated: “We have extreme problems with parking already in Malham and are working with Area 5 Highways and NYCC to implement further traffic management initiatives in Malham village, some of which will be established and finally implemented during 2020 after many years of effort on our part.”

Rachael Caton, who had made the application with her husband Ashley, told the committee during its virtual meeting: "Our family have lived and worked in Malhamdale for over 100 years and we are very respectful of the surrounding village green and the need to protect its unique status.

“The concerns of local residents have been very carefully considered in the management plan submitted as part of this application and these are reflected in the proposed conditions relating to opening hours, lighting, signage, bin storage and the lack of parking for customers.”

She said there would be no seating for customers outside the kiosk which would be accessed from a new door onto their own land. ‘

“The barn benefits from the footfall of walkers [going] to Gordale Scar via a permitted footpath which runs across our farmland,” she added saying the farm-diversification project would not only provide walkers and cyclists with locally-sourced refreshments but also employment for locals.

The planning officer told the committee that staff and deliveries could use the existing track to the barn. There would be limited seating available inside for those waiting to be served with takeaway food.

He explained that the barn was substantially rebuilt around 2009 and so was not considered to be a traditional agricultural building.

He added: “Malham is a key visitor centre in the national park. The proposal makes use of an underused building within a prominent location. [It] would contribute to the attractiveness of Malham as a visitor location of more than local importance. This is an important factor in consideration of the potential impact of the Covid-19 global pandemic on the economy of the national park.”

Local councillors including Craven District councillor Richard Foster were happy that the concerns of the parish council had been met.