Coronavirus York updates; 27th August 2020

Deaths and test results

THREE more positive test results announced today bring the cumulative total to 959.

The 6 cases reported on 16th August have now dropped off the government’s distribution map. This had shown that at least 3 of the cases reported on 16th August were in the Woodthorpe/Acomb Park/Foxwood area.

The latest map (covering 17th August to 23rd August) suggests that there is not a concentration of new cases in any particular neighbourhood.

The number of tests completed each day is still not being revealed by the authorities. This makes it difficult to judge whether trends are getting worse or staying stable.

Clearly there are still issues to be addressed.

There have been no further hospital deaths

Giant phone mast refused planning permission

Residents have won their battle to prevent a huge 5G phone mast being erected on Bellhouse Way.

The 20 metre high mast would have been located next to the Foxwood Community Centre.

The proposal from Hutchinson/Clarke Telecom was heavily criticised by the residents association, ward Councillors and neighbours. They were concerned that the mast would dominate the residential streetscape, affect footpath widths, impede sight lines and could have facilitated criminals to use the cabinets to gain access to nearby properties.

The Council gives the impact on visual amenity as its main reason for refusing the application. The full decision notice can be read by clicking here

While the Telecoms Company could appeal against the decision we hope that they will now stand back and reflect.

A more obvious location for their mast would be on Foxwood Lane next to the Thanet Road sports area.This is well away from the nearest dwelling.

The existing mast cabinets could be moved there as could those which are currently located at the entrance to the Rugby Club car park (which also cause sight line problems for drivers).

Still, at least in this case, the Council seems to have heeded the views of the local community.

Playground tidy up call

Local residents have asked the Council to deal with maintenance issues at the Grange Lane park.

Complaints have been raised about littering but some of the equipment is unusable as a result of vandalism, graffiti, muddy entrances and missing safety surfaces under the swings.

Safety surfaces have sunk
Signs have been vandalised
Play equipment needs cleaning
Litter reported earlier in the week

The Council also promised to put hardcore down on parts of the footpath link from Grange Lane to Westfield Place where it is subject to flooding. This work hasn’t been done yet. It needs to be completed before the wetter winter months arrive.

The path is now being used occasionally by cyclists as a short cut. Some arrangements for them could be made at relatively little cost.

Use by walkers has also increased since lock-down started.

Park footpath needs hardcore in some places to prevent flooding

Too much graffiti on utility boxes in York

As we have said before, these It seems that both utility companies and volunteers have given up on removing graffiti from utility boxes around the City. Several instances have been reported over the last couple of months without a response.

Often local volunteers and Councillors would make cleaning up graffiti a top priority. Environmental crimes like these as it can damage the image of a local neighbourhood. There has been little evidence of that recently.

The real key though is for the authorities to identify and take action against those who are responsible. That also isn’t happening.

The graffiti removal service launched last year – which cleans publicly owned street furniture – has been much more successful.

The annual – pandemic delayed – Great British Spring Clean starts on 11th September. We hope that the Council will include “tag” removal from these utility boxes as part of that campaign.