A PLAN to boost a farm's income through tourism has been turned down due to the harm it would cause to the greenbelt.

Derwent Valley Glamping applied to put up four seasonal 'yurt' tents on land at Church Lane, Wheldrake, near York.

The scheme, which included creating a footpath, was refused by City of York Council's Planning Committee.

Members backed the officer's recommendation to refuse the plan on the grounds it was "inappropriate development" on the greenbelt and amid concerns over its impact on the Lower Derwent Valley National Nature Reserve.

The applicant, Chris Hobson, said his family have been working farmers in Wheldrake for 60 years and currently had dairy and beef cattle.

If approved, the diversification scheme would generate vital extra income.

He added: "Each tent will have its own toilet and shower. All tents can be taken down in a day and we intend to do that after the season."

Mr Hobson said electricity and drainage were already available and that the scheme did not conflict with the greenbelt.

He said: "All we ask is a common sense approach to this application."

Committee chairman, Cllr Ann Reid felt it would be hard to contain the plan's impact to the area it specified.

She said: "My concern is however neat and tidy the tents are, we all know that when people go on holiday, they tend to spread out."

Cllr Fiona Derbyshire said: "I don't think we have a choice to not refuse the plan, but I do have a sense of frustration.

"Perhaps with a little more groundwork, the applicant might get more support."

The plan was refused, with 14 members backing the recommendation and one abstaining.