Call for action to address local issues

Problems with litter, potholes and vandalism

Hopefully the new Council, to be elected on Thursday will tackle outstanding public service issues with renewed enthusiasm.

Litter on snickets like Tithe Close is a recurring problem

Despite winter being over, there are still too many potholes on our roads. They are particularly dangerous for cyclists.

Vandalism has also reared its head again. The York Council needs to respond more quickly to damage reports.

Foxwood Lane snicket fencing damaged in March, still not secured

…and it is about time that areas which are littered on an almost weekly basis are tackled. The Council promised mobile CCTV surveillance of problem areas but there has been little evidence of improvement.

Councils, of all political persuasions, often say that their priorities are to improve basic public servce service standards. Hopefully there will be evidence of this after Thursday’s poll.

Six men ordered to pay £2000 for urinating in public in York

York Magistrates have sentenced six men to pay £1,983 for urinating in public following work between City of York Council and North Yorkshire Police to tackle anti-social behaviour in the city.

On Tuesday 24 April 2019, York Magistrates heard that Andrew Brearley (aged 47 of Wistow Road, Selby) was found by a police officer, urinating near the entrance to the car park on Tanner Row, York, around 9pm on Saturday 2 February 2019.

Mr Brearley, who apologised for his actions following the incident, pleaded guilty by post and was fined £117, ordered to pay costs of £144 and a prosecution surcharge of £30.

Patrick John McHugh (aged 30 of Carr Lane, York) was seen by a police officer, urinating against a wall in full view of passing people near Toft Green towards Micklegate, York around 3:30am on Saturday 26 January 2019.

Mr McHugh pleaded guilty by post and was fined £117, ordered to pay costs of £144 and a prosecution surcharge of £30.

York Magistrates (on 23 April 2019) also heard that George James McCormick (aged 18 of Mill Lane, Basted, Sevenoaks) was found by a police officer, urinating against a gate in Toft Green, York at 12:15am on Friday 18 January 2019.

Mr McCormick continued to urinate despite being approached by an officer. He failed to attend court or submit a plea and was found guilty in his absence. Mr McCormick was fined £220, ordered to pay costs of £144 and a prosecution surcharge of £30.

Paul Raymond Baldwin (aged 33 of Temple Street, Gateshead) was found by a York BID Ranger, urinating in the doorway of a sweet shop on Low Ousegate, York at 7:45pm on Saturday 2 February 2019.

Mr Baldwin, who was visibly intoxicated, pleaded guilty by post and was fined £131, ordered to pay costs of £144 and a prosecution surcharge of £30.

Emlyn Thomas (aged 37 of Sutton Way, Clifton, York) was also seen by a York BID Ranger urinating against a wall in York city centre at 11:25am on Wednesday 13 February 2019, in view of passing people.

Mr Thomas failed to attend court or submit a plea and was found guilty in his absence. He was fined £60 based on a benefits assessment, ordered to pay costs of £144 and a prosecution surcharge of £30.

Yesterday (23 April 2019), York Magistrates also heard that Peter Edward Stableford (aged 50 of Holyrood Drive, Rawcliffe, York) was found by a police officer, urinating at the entrance of the car park in Toft Green at 11:35pm on Friday 1 February 2019.

Mr Stableford pleaded guilty by post and was fined £294, ordered to pay costs of £144 and a prosecution surcharge of £30

North Yorkshire Police launch PCSO recruitment campaign

Today marks the start of North Yorkshire Police’s major new recruitment campaign to bring more than 50 Police Community Support Officers into the Force over the next 12 months.

North Yorkshire Police launches PCSO recruitment campaign

The campaign is part of a wider recruitment plan to boost the number of frontline police working across North Yorkshire’s communities

Police Community Support Officers (or PCSOs) are paid employees who work alongside warranted Police Officers to keep communities safe.  They take part in neighbourhood patrols, help to tackle anti-social behaviour, provide crime prevention advice and support investigations.  Whilst many people choose to be a PCSO as a permanent career role, others use the position to gain experience before applying to become a warranted Officer.

Speaking about the recruitment campaign, Phil Cain, Deputy Chief Constable of North Yorkshire Police said:

“PCSOs are a really important part of the policing family because they have a very direct link with communities, and help to solve the problems that can affect peoples’ quality of life.

“The increase in the Precept has meant we can boost the number of PCSOs we have in our Force by 20, which is really positive, and will make a significant different to communities.  But added to that we also need to recruit to fill vacancies that have arisen from people retiring or moving into warranted Officer roles.

“Our aim is to recruit 50 PCSOs this year in three intakes.  Today’s campaign is the start of that process.”

Based around the qualities required to succeed in the PCSO role – including communication, people skills, level-headedness, problem-solving and team-work – the campaign encourages people with these abilities to “be a PCSO”.  As well as general publicity, North Yorkshire Police will be holding some special workshops aimed at encouraging people from under-represented groups, such as black and minority ethnic communities, to make an application.

Said DCC Phil Cain:

“We made great progress last year in attracting candidates from a diverse communities into the Force, and we’re continuing to focus on that again this year.  We want our workforce to be representative of the wider demographics in North Yorkshire as a whole, and we’ll be running our Positive Action activities alongside this PCSO recruitment campaign to support that.”

Anyone interested in joining North Yorkshire Police as a PCSO can visit: for information on the role and how to apply.

Vandalism and litter disappointment

Newly installed fencing between the Acorn field and Wains Road has been vandalised.
Ditto fencing protecting a (closed) snicket on Foxwood Lane.
Bags dumped next to recycling bins on Acomb Wood Drive
Litter at the Foxwood shops this morning. There is a bin only a few yards away
The telephone kiosk has been repaired. Unfortunately fly posters have now appeared.

All issue will be reported. We expect to have some good news to report later this afternoon!

Meet the 999 team” opportunity in York city centre this weekend

Police and other emergency services are inviting families to come and meet the people who keep them safe in York city centre this weekend.

North Yorkshire Police officers will be on Coney Street this Saturday afternoon with a marked police van for youngsters to explore. They’ll also be joined by firefighters from North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, staff from Yorkshire Ambulance Service, and volunteers from York Rescue Boat – among others.

The emergency services have joined forces to give members of the local community the chance to get to know them, and discuss any issues they might have.

Inspector Andy Godfrey, from York City Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “There will be emergency vehicles stationed along Coney Street on Saturday afternoon, and it’s a great opportunity for people to stop by and say hello. The city centre will be busy with events like the Great York Bunny Search and a Dinosaur World Live T-Rex model, so we’re hoping to meet lots of families as they pass by.

“Of course, due to the nature of what we do, we might get called away, but we’re hoping to be available from 12pm to 6pm. So if you’re in the city centre on Saturday, do stop by to see us, have a chat, and maybe even get a selfie. There’ll be plenty of emergency service vehicles and high-vis uniforms, so you won’t be able to miss us!”

Dangerous dog owners sentenced following dog attack on person

The owners of a dog found to be dangerously out of control have been handed a five year dog ownership ban by York Magistrates today [15 March 2019].

City of York Council, in a joint operation with North Yorkshire Police, seized the dog on the 27 July 2018, to prevent continued aggression towards people and other animals.

Scott Berkley (aged 42, of no fixed abode) and Katie Bradley (aged 41 also of no fixed abode), owned the Staffordshire bull terrier. The dog was not micro chipped and would frequently escape their former home at Dale Street and attack smaller dogs.

One attack left a resident visiting hospital due to injuries received when they tried to intervene as their pet was attacked. Their Jack RussellxCorgi required surgery to save its hearing.

Mr Berkley and Ms Bradley were charged with an aggravated offence of owning a dog which was dangerously out of control and injured a person.

They had previously pleaded guilty to failing to microchip a dog. This is the first time that City of York Council has brought a case of failing to microchip a dog.

Today [15 March 2019], Mr Berkley and Ms Bradley pleaded guilty to the outstanding charge and were each issued a five year ban on owning a dog by York Magistrates. They were also ordered to pay the victim a total of £468.

Phone scam warning to BT customers

The Police have issued a warning about a phone scam targeting BT customers.

Fraud Alert – North Yorkshire  Calls claiming to be from BT.

North Yorkshire Police have recently received a number of calls from residents in relation to a scam call, claiming to be from BT.


Residents have reported that they have been cold called on the phone, and have been told, by a recorded voice, that they are going to be cut off, or there are issues with their computer/phone line/internet and they have to press 1 to continue.
When pressing 1, the residents have been connected to a line where they have been kept talking to someone who claims to be from BT and has either attempted to obtain bank account details or have had to download something to their computer.

North Yorkshire Police strongly advise you not to press 1. Hang up and contact your phone provider on the customer services number from your bill. If you call from a landline, ensure that you have a dialling tone prior to making the call.

BT have created a webpage on their site to offer advice –

If you have been a victim of this, please contact your bank immediately.
You can also find advice on our website –

Further turmoil for Tories as Police/Fire chief faces boot

Problem with LEGO is that it can fall over

It looks like the North Yorkshire crime, fire and policing commissioner Julia Mulligan faces the chop following an extraordinary few weeks of controversy.

The final straw seems to have been a confrontation with other Tories on the crime panel who were unimpressed by her plans for a 9.8% increase in the amount that taxpayers will have to folk out for policing. The proposal was reluctantly nodded through yesterday.

A scrutiny panel initially blocked the move saying it was unclear how the funding increase would impact on critical street level policing numbers. Instead attention focused on the plans to appoint additional senior admin staff while the Commissioners personal expenses (credit card and hotel bills) also came under increased scrutiny.

The combination of the management of policing and fire activities under one roof had been claimed, by some, as likely to improve efficiency.  This is now increasingly being questioned.

Julia Mulligan had also been subject to several bullying allegations over recent months, deflecting attention from her principal role in fighting rising crime rates in some parts of York. Her presence in the City has been very low profile over the years although she has an  advice surgery scheduled in York on 6th March

Many people continue to doubt the need for an elected police chief. The old committee system provided adequate supervision without the additional bureaucracy and political posturing that the Commissioner system involves.

The next commissioner elections take place in 2020.

Appeal following recent attempt burglary in Beckfield Lane

North Yorkshire Police is appealing for witnesses and information about an attempt burglary that occurred at Co-op Beckfield Lane in York.

It happened at the Beckfield Lane store at 2.15am on Monday (18 February 2019) and involved three men attempting to gain entry using an implement to break the shutters.

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

The men are described as wearing dark clothing, with black hooded tops with hoods up, all approximately 5 feet 11 in height. No further description was provided.

Anyone with information that could assist the investigation should contact North Yorkshire Police on 101, select option 2, and ask for Joanne Shanley. 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 12190030254.

York Council claims over 50% of complaints answered within 5 days

…we don’t think so!

The Council has published its latest financial and performance update. It reveals that it could overspend this year’s budget by as much as £1.5 million. The expectation is that the Council will outturn on target.

A major source of complaint is paradoxically complaint handing. The Council claims to have answered “50% of complaints within 5 working days”.


….but we have a current instance of a complaint registered on 27th December 2018 which hasn’t even been acknowledged yet. The Council needs to improve its exception reporting systems and inject some fresh drive into its customer relationship processes.

Another key concern is the impact that the Council is having on delayed discharges (bed blocking) at the hospital. “The total number of days that patients resident in York have been delayed, for all reasons, during the last twelve months for which statistics have been published (November 17 – October 18) was 10,655 which equates to, on average, 29 beds each day occupied because of DToC across the health and social care system. From August to October 2018, this figure was 2,967 days which equates to 32 beds each day”. The Council says that the closure of two large nursing homes in the city has impacted on the ability of Adult Social Care to place patients quickly, as well as considerable pressures in both the residential and homecare markets.

The future of the Greenworks section of Yorkcraft has also never been properly explained. The Council is reducing the budget by a further £160,000 for adult social care workers, in supported employment, during the next financial year. So the future looks bleak for some of the workers who are a familiar sight as they deliver newsletters to various parts of the City.

Following the decision by the Council to suspend its housing modernisation programme the number of Council homes not meeting the decency standard has soared to 546.

It was zero two years ago