Residents of Helmsley and the wider community are invited to view initial designs and share their thoughts on a new building intended as the Headquarters and Ranger depot for the North York Moors National Park Authority.

Last year, the National Park Authority acquired land towards the southeast of Helmsley, at the end of Riccal Drive, with the intention of building a new combined office and depot to meet the needs of the organisation now and into the future. Following a Helmsley Town Council meeting in February, community members are now invited to view the initial designs of the building for the first time.

Ian Nicholls, Director of Corporate Services at the North York Moors National Park Authority, said: “This is a first opportunity for residents and interested parties to see the draft plans and ask any questions they may have before we look to apply for planning permission from North Yorkshire Council later in 2024.

“Our requirements for office space have changed significantly over recent years and the Old Vicarage, where we currently reside, is now much bigger than we need. Our Ranger depot on Sawmill Lane in Helmsley also requires substantial investment to make it fit for modern working.

“We are keen to stay in Helmsley, providing employment opportunities and spending money locally, so it’s our intention to build a joint office and depot on the new site, which is land designated for employment in the Helmsley Plan.

“We’re grateful for the feedback we’ve had from a number of residents so far, and we’d now like to welcome people to see what stage the designs are at and let us know how we can make best use of the development for the community of Helmsley.”

Helmsley’s representative on North Yorkshire Council and member of the North York Moors National Park Authority, George Jabbour, said: “The plans of the National Park would have an impact on local residents in Helmsley in three different locations: Sawmill Lane where the existing ranger depot is, around the current offices at the Old Vicarage off Bondgate, and the area surrounding Riccal Drive where the proposed combined building would be constructed. Therefore, I would encourage anyone who has a view on the development to attend one of the drop-in sessions on Wednesday, 8 May, at Helmsley Arts Centre to share their thoughts and feedback.”

The informal drop-in sessions will be held on Wednesday, May 8 in the Dorothy Morley Room at Helmsley Arts Centre between 10am-12noon, 1pm-4pm and 4.30pm-7pm.