Tim Brierley, a director at YHL, said: "We are absolutely delighted that our plans for Gateforth Park have been formalised. This is a sustainable site with good pedestrian access to the village facilities at Thorpe Willoughby. As a retirement centre, traffic from the site will be minimal when compared to the previous operation of the mushroom farm."
Christopher Harrison, an agricultural and landed estates partner with Andrew Jackson Solicitors, led the legal team that advised Boroughbridge-based YHL on the acquisition.
Harrison added: "We were asked by York House Leisure to undertake a time critical, pre-offer due diligence exercise, where we discovered a number of potential hurdles connected with the site's historical use as an intensive mushroom farm.
"The site, and the buildings on it, had fallen into a derelict state, worsened by repeated acts of vandalism and fly-tipping, which meant that it was only attractive to a client who could see beyond its current state and realise the development opportunity for the community of what is a well located and potentially attractive site.
"In order for us to feel satisfied that we could reach the point of contract exchange, we undertook in-depth negotiations with the seller's solicitors, along with extensive environmental due diligence with invaluable input from property advisers GVA."