About Us

We are a group of local people, residents of Whitby and District, concerned about the direction of the development of our area. The group originated via a Facebook group in January 2022, starting to get organised around April 2022. We aim to apply for charitable status shortly. Our meetings are regularly attended by representatives past and present from local councils, as well as residents groups from east and west of Whitby, and many more besides. If you are a Whitby and District resident and have an opinion on life in your district, why not join us? There is no membership fee, just be willing to put some of your time into standing up for your area. Better still, join us, and invest some time in pushing a campaign to improve things in your area.

Whilst the group originated in Whitby, and Whitby is the largest population centre in the area, we don’t restrict our campaigning to Whitby issues, and welcome input and representation from all of the Whitby Travel-To-Work-Area (TTWA) as defined on the map below. This aligns very approximately with the Whitby West, Streonshalh, Esk Valley and Coast, Danby and Mulgrave NYCC wards.

In terms of town / parish councils, this encompasses the following :- Whitby Town Council, Aislaby Parish Council, Danby Group Parish Council, Egton Parish Council, Eskdaleside-cum-Ugglebarnby Parish Council, Fylingdales Parish Council, Glaisdale Parish Council, Goathland Parish Council, Grosmont Parish Council, Hawsker-cum-Stainsacre Parish Council, Hinderwell Parish Council, Lythe Parish Council, Mickleby Group Parish Council, Newholm-cum-Dunsley Parish Council, Roxby Group Parish Council, Sneaton Parish Council, and Ugthorpe Group Parish Council.

Whitby Community Network Map

In terms of where Whitby Community Network (WCN) fits in relative to local councils, this figure aims to show the relationships

Local Council - Resident Relationship

Note that a Community Network is distinct from a town/parish Council. Some differences are

  • A Community Network represents the area of multiple town/parish councils.
  • A Community Network actively campaigns for change in an area, whereas a town/parish council has the power to request a few specific things only and doesn’t campaign.
  • A Community Network allows all residents to be heard and to participate in a debate about issues. A town/parish council simply has a limited time slot for a few members of the public speak for 3 minutes before a meeting, and they cannot participate in any debate, only councillors can do that.
  • A town/parish council manages assets and services. A Community Network does not manage anything of that form, instead providing a forum and voice to represent residents.

Terms Of Reference

This group was set up to support, enable and empower the Whitby and District community including residents, businesses and local organisations. This will offer a network for the community to build a sustainable future for current and future residents and businesses of Whitby and District. The opportunity has arisen partly from trying to coordinate the number of housing pressure groups set up in Whitby and following the decision to form the new North Yorkshire unitary Council in 2023, who’s aim is to devolve more powers to local market town areas.

The key issues are:-

  • the lack of suitable and affordable housing for residents and key workers in the area
  • the limited green spaces in Whitby which are under threat of development, with the main areas not fully accessible to all
  • an infrastructure which is not sustainable
  • an education system that does not support the local population
  • the lack of a strategy to deliver a highly skilled, motivated and productive workforce
  • a health and social care system that does not support the local population
  • the lack of a strategic plan for harbour land
  • the lack of a sustainable Neighbourhood Plan

Purpose

To develop a strong local community working with residents, local businesses and community groups, together with collaboration with local councils, based on transparency, democracy, localism, and community action in order to protect the historic nature of the town, to build a strong local economy and to provide a sustainable future for Whitby and District.

Aims

  • Raise awareness of local issues, including with local councils
  • Provide a forum for residents and businesses where local voices can be heard and listened to
  • Collaborate with other community, ecological and volunteer groups in the local area
  • Influence and work with councils and public bodies by designing local solutions
  • Enable and empower the community to take positive action through such activities as social action and civic engagement
  • Provide support with information, advice, guidance, learning and development opportunities
  • Strengthen local accountable democracy

Membership

Meetings : open to anyone living or working in the Whitby and District area (approximately of the four unitary wards of Whitby West, Streonshalh, Esk Valley and Coast, Danby and Mulgrave), those interested in joining us, or by invitation where required.
Committee / Working Parties : those with skills required by the WCN will be voted / co-opted on a needs basis as the organisation develops from both within and out – with the local community.
Formal Membership : to be agreed once this becomes a formally recognised group.

Data Transparency and Correctness

Where we make use of data on this website, we will always define the origin of that data, and where we make any calculations / analysis using that data we will make the data available for download, typically in spreadsheet format, so that readers of this site can perform their own analysis. Whilst the UK Government has made strides in open data usage, the same cannot be said for local councils; perhaps they can learn from us in this respect.

If you notice any factual / data errors in any of the concerns reported on this website, please report them to us, with a description of the webpage with the error, what you think is incorrect and, where possible, a link to an official document / website where the updated (correct) data can be found.