Stag and hen ‘party houses’ in York banned from use as holiday rentals

Ascot Mews, Emerald Street, York, with medallion, Cllr Fiona Fitzpatrick. Main image: Google Maps

Two York properties that have been advertised for stag and hen parties for up to 25 people can no longer be used as short-term vacation rentals such as Airbnbs after advisers said they caused too many problems for the neighbours.

Nicholas Tate has applied for retrospective planning permission to change the use of one and two Ascot Mews in Emerald Street to short-term vacation rental.

Guildhall Borough Councilor Fiona Fitzpatrick ‘called’ the application so it could be considered by a planning committee.

She said: “Sometimes on a Friday afternoon you can throw huge parties – same-sex groups of up to 22 people in party mode. It’s really not in keeping with the family character of the street.

“It’s quite a compact area and community cohesion has been significantly affected.”

Neighbors complained of drunken and loud behavior the music until the early hours of the morning.

Holgate adviser Rachel Melly told the committee: ‘Beyond the owner’s personal profit, there is no economic benefit to allowing yet another short-term full stay in an area where there is already a strong density of this type of accommodation.”

The properties can be turned into short-term holiday rentals without the owner necessarily needing to apply for planning permission for a change of use, but planning officers have argued that the way the two properties at Ascot Mews were used meant that it was necessary.

They argued that the impact on neighbors meant the request should be denied.

The claimant said he would limit each house to six people and ensure the two properties were not booked for one large group, but officers said this would be “extremely difficult to control”.

Cllr Jonny Crawshaw said: “We’re not saying that Airbnbs absolutely anywhere and everywhere should all be taken down, but I think there’s a pretty big difference between that and basically the party houses that have a massive impact on the neighborhood.”

Cllr Janet Looker said it would be an ideal home for families.

Cllr Denise Craghill added: “In a quiet cul-de-sac this is really inappropriate.”

It is understood that three Ascot Mews are also used as short-term rentals, but under separate ownership.

Advisors in york are increasingly concerned about the growth of short-term vacation rentals on local communities and the housing market. York Central MP Rachael Maskell is also trying to tighten restrictions on them in Parliament.

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