Appeal following suspected Arson at York library

North Yorkshire Police is appealing for witnesses and information about an incident of suspected Arson at Tang Hall Explore Library.

The incident happened some time between 3pm on Saturday 27 February  and 8.30am on Monday 1 March  and involved an area outside of the building being damaged by fire

We are requesting the public’s assistance to help establish the full circumstances surrounding the incident.

In particular, we are appealing for information about anyone who was seen in the area or who saw the fire.

Anyone with information that could assist the investigation should contact North Yorkshire Police on 101, select option 2, and ask for Nicola Russell.

You can also email

If you wish to remain anonymous, you can pass information to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Please quote the North Yorkshire Police reference number 12210069072.


There have also been problems with theft and vandalism on the other side of the City in Foxwood recently. There have been thefts from the community centre garden, fencing has been damaged and windows broken. One empty council bungalow has been a particular target.

CCTV footage suggests teenagers are responsible.

Police are asking anyone who sees any crimes being committed to ring 999 immediately

Hazel Court HWRC opening hours extended for essential visits

City of York Council is extending the opening hours of Hazel Court Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC) from Monday 8 March.

This will bring forward the later opening hours, which were due to start in April – for strictly essential journeys only. The new opening times will be:

  • Mondays to Saturdays: 8.30am to 7pm
  • Sundays: 8.30am to 4pm

In recent weeks, there has been a huge demand for the HWRC site, with an increase of around 30 per cent in visits, which has resulted in queuing problems in the area.

The extended opening hours hopes to address this issue and in addition to this Yorwaste, who manage the sites, have made further adjustments to make on site bays clearer and have increased the number of garden waste and cardboard skips.

Traffic monitoring will be in place at sites and due to safety concerns regarding queueing outside of the sites, residents may be asked to leave and return at another time.

Kerbside garden waste collections will also resume from 29 March. Check your garden waste collection dates via our online waste collection calendar.

In addition to this, traders are permitted to use Harewood Whin to dispose of their waste too. For more information on this visit . Commercial waste tipping times are will remain the same Monday to Friday, between 8.30am to 4.30pm, not at weekends.

NHS moves to Community Stadium on Monday

From Monday, March 8 the NHS blood taking service for York will be based at the Monk’s Cross stadium.

It is the first in a range of NHS outpatient’s services that will move to the community setting.

The blood service (Phlebotomy) is currently based at Peppermill Court.

The service, run by York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, offers both booked appointments and a drop in service weekly from Monday to Friday, 8am-5pm.

Parking is free for two hours and the stadium can be easily reached on public transport.

In the coming months the blood taking service will be followed by outpatients clinics for rheumatology, musculoskeletal, ophthalmology and sleep services.”

The trees are going

Tree felling work was going on today in the Museum Gardens.

There is a project in the area which will see flood resilience improved.

Not everyone will be pleased to see the loss of mature tree canopies.

Still the work does provide at least a short term opportunity to view the Yorkshire Museum and The Hospitium from normally obstructed angles.

The trees are coming

The scale of the York Council’s afforestation plans are becoming clearer.

A meeting taking place next week will hear that increasing York’s tree cover from the current 10.76% of the total area to 13% (national average) by 2050 would require 608 ha of new cover, or 21 ha per year.

York currently has 2,926 ha of tree canopy cover, representing 10.8%
of its total area. 60% of this canopy cover is made up of trees outside

The report says, “the rate of viable delivery imposes a significant constraint on new canopy cover. The York Community Woodland project (Knapton Forest) in West York aims to deliver 50-60 ha of new tree cover over the next two years.

A 13% target for 2050 would require a similar level of growth every two years“.

City of York Council is a member of the White Rose Forest (WRF)
partnership which aims to provide tree canopy across large parts of Yorkshire.

The WRF project assumes an ambition for a 13% target for tree canopy cover by 2050, equating to around 22-27 ha per annum. This target would result in “an annual carbon sequestration rate at 2050 of circa 9,000tCO2 per year; equivalent to around 1% of the regions total CO2 emissions between 2020-2050“.

As with the Knapton Forest project, there has been no public consultation on the plan. The costs are unknown although, based on the Knapton land values, they could mean a taxpayers bill for several hundred million pounds.

The report doesn’t assess the scope for increasing tree canopy cover on existing amenity areas or private gardens.

The effect on food production is also unclear. The areas selected for afforestation are mainly grade 2 agricultural land.

They cover large areas near Poppleton, Skelton and Elvington.

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Coronavirus York updates; 3rd March 2021


One hospital death has been announced today. It occurred on Monday.

Test results

Eighteen additional positive test results were announced today. Brings the cumulative total to 11,906

Rate /100k population has fallen to 66.0. That is the joint lowest rate recorded this year. Trending to fall below 60 before the end of the week.

The number of cases fell from 153 yesterday to 139 today.

Case numbers continue to fall at all levels


All but 5 neighbourhoods now have below average infection rates

There has been a further increase in cases (3) in the South Bank/Dringhouses area



4437 PCR test were conducted during the week ending 26th February 2021.

Of these 3.1% were positive. This is fewer than the 3.3% recorded during the previous 7 days.

2535 “lateral flow” test were conducted on 2nd March

Returning to schools

As part of its roadmap out of the current lockdown for England, the Government has announced that all children should return to school or college from Monday 8 March.

Under the plans, all secondary school pupils and college students will be offered three symptom-free Covid tests before starting home testing (which will be arranged through your child’s school or college). This means they can get tests to make sure they are Covid-free, even if they don’t have any Covid symptoms. Each test should be taken 3 – 5 days apart. Pupils can return to school or college following their first negative test result.

Schools have been in contact with parents and carers about their arrangements, which may include getting a test at one of our symptom-free testing sites. We are encouraging children of secondary school age and their close family members (household bubble) aged 11 years and over to book a symptom-free test. You must book an appointment for each person being tested before arriving at the test centre.

You can find more information on symptom-free testing, and book an appointment, at