KIRKBYMOORSIDE is in line to get a new concert hall, given in memory of the legendry Les Maw, the head of the town's famous Town Brass Band for years, thanks to the generosity of local land and estate owner, James Holt.
The surprise news came at the Town Council's monthly meeting during a debate on plans to develop the town's former highways depot at Manor Vale, which is also the headquarters of the local scouts group and the multi-award winning band which dates back to the Battle of Waterloo, after concerns were raised about the possible noise from the band's rehearsals and the impact on the would-be residents of the planned adjoining homes scheme.
Richrd Dykes, of PDP, the agents for the developer of the Manor Vale site, Ms Victoria Greetham, said there could be a land swap arrangement for the scouts, and the scheme would also include some affordable housing for local residents.
He added that there were environmental concerns regarding an old quarry and cave on the site and the latest plans showed that the homes would be sited further away from the band room.
Acoustic measures were also being planned to combat noise from the band headquarters.
Councillors agreed that the playing by the band could be a problem for people living close to the bandroom, but were told by Mr Dykes that acoustic experts had described the potential noise as being in the "low to medium risk". However it would not be "like living next to a motorway" he added.
The latest scheme showed the houses further away from the bandroom and triple glazing and fencing could be erected as a further deterrent to the noise concerns.
Mr Dykes said thw applicant for the Manor Vale schem on the development. e had offered a bigger area of land as part of a land swap arrangement for the scouts, and Coun Joe Coughlan said the scouts were keen to work with the developers and the band
The Town Mayor, Coun Chris Dowie, asked what plans there were for safe pedestrian access on the site and was told that the County Council highways department was suggesting contrasting surfaces and road markings. She added: "The revised plan for the site is a good step forward".
John Woodward, a leading member of the band, said: "we welcome the fact that the houses are being moved further away from the band room." He suggested that one solution could be for the developers to fund the sound insulation of the bandroom itself, adding that it could be even be utilised as a sound recording studio.
Coun Dowie told the meeting that Mr Holt, owner of the Ravenswick Estate, who owns land in Manor Close, had told the town council that he wants to build a 250-seat hall which could be used for band concerts and for public events.
"He is prepared to spend up to £150,000 on the scheme," she added. "The scouts could then move into the band room - there are lots of ideas and possibilities and I certainly welcome Mr Holt's offer.
"We feel that any development of the Manor Vale site should be for the benefit of the community. People will be able to have their say on the plans."
Coun Dowie's suggestion that scheme should be decided by the full planning committee at Ryedale District Council, and not be delegated to officers for a decision, was backed by the council.