A planned £10million expansion of warehouse facilities at the Pavers site on the edge of York which promise to create 130 jobs has received backing from a leading historical group, as well as a top business organisation.

Both the York Civic Trust and the York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce are supporting revised plans for the 11,015m2 expansion at Northminster Business Park, which is expected to come before the planning committee of City of York Council in the coming weeks.

The revised plans were submitted to the city council last April, following the refusal of larger plans in November 2022.

The York Civic Trust has told the council the scheme represents the ‘very special circumstances’ which under planning legislation allows development in the Green Belt.


The civic trust notes Pavers reporting a 700% growth in online sales over the past three years and 400% within the past year. This represented a ‘fundamental change of focus’ for Pavers, with online sales expected to increase from a third to half of turnover in the next five years.

The trust continued: “Pavers is a tremendous commercial success story for the city. In recent times, York has lost major employers in the manufacturing and distribution industries, including in the western side of the city RR Donnelley, British Sugar's sugar beet factory, Challis of York nursery distribution centre, and railway carriage and wagon manufacture.

“Pavers is evidently a success story, and one that the city should be proud of and look to support, including in its plans to expand commercial practice.”

York Civic Trust also warned that unless Pavers cannot expand at the back of its existing it would have to relocate outside York, possibly to Investment Zone areas, which would receive government support, a prospect Pavers has previously raised.

The trust further commented: “The risk to the city from this is not simply the loss of large-scale employment. It is also the adverse message it would send to businesses looking to locate to York.”

The York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce is similarly supportive, noting the company has ‘painstakingly’ amended plans to address the reasons for refusal 18 months ago.

The chamber agrees the company, founded by Catherine Paver in the city in 1971 is a success story that now boasts 800 stores, employing 1,500 nationally, 300 at its York headquarters.

Its president Sarah Czarnecki said: “The proposed expansion plans will be of significant benefit to the city of York. As well as creating another 130 skilled jobs, the majority being skilled roles to meet the needs of the high technology logistics operations, the expansion has been forecast to generate an additional £6.44m GVA annually for York – which, when added to the existing operation, is worth an incredible £222.29m over 10 years.”

She added: “Given the efforts gone to by Pavers, and the enormous economic benefits its plans will mean for York’s economy and society, it is the Chamber’s strong view that it should be granted by planners.

“Granting permission would send a clear message that York is a city that is not only open for business, but a place to invest in and create jobs.”