Locals in one of the UK’s best seaside villages claimed that the idyllic area has been ruined by outsiders over the last few years.
Staithes, in Yorkshire, is a chocolate box village but an increase in people buying holiday homes there has changed the area’s character.
The northernmost village in Yorkshire, it boasts stone cottages, cobbled streets and winding country lanes.
Residents, however, claim the village – which was once a thriving community, full of young families – has turned silent with quiet lanes and dark vacant homes, reported Yorkshire Live.
The town has now lost both of its two Post Office branches, and the village school has been razed.
Vanessa Ditchburn, 53, said most Staithes families have moved away from the epicentre of the village at the bottom of the hills, towards the coast.
And the families who have remained in Staithes have moved to newer estates in the outskirts of the village.
She told Yorkshire Live: “If people are just staying here on holiday, it’s not the same as people living here, is it? There’s still a community but now it’s further out of the village, in the new houses at the top.
“It makes me feel really sad. Growing up in the village, we were all used to playing together down in the village. There were lots of children down there.”
The mum-of-one spoke fondly of the old school where “all the children” used to attend. However, the school was knocked down, making way for a new one in the fringes of the village, by the Co-op.
Another resident, Kerry Parkes, a mum-of-two said walking through the quiet streets can feel “surreal”.
She said: “There’s a lot of holiday lets, it is sad. The thing that is really sad is people who have got them as second homes, but they never ever come. So, they are left empty for the majority of the year, and they just go to wrack and ruin. That’s a shame.”
Kerry, originally from Sheffield, runs Reyt Good Fudge shop on High Street.
She added: “In winter, when you’re walking down, there’s not many lights on in the cottages and it is a bit surreal, really.”