What’s on in York: Concert – Alphabet Soup Made In Britain

Fairfax House :

Sat 27 May :

7.30pm – 9.00pm :

£14 & concessions

May _27AlphabetA is for Thomas Arne,
B is for Richard Rodney Bennett…
E is for Sir Edward Elgar.

An A to Z tour of composers of The British Isles from the past 800 years…

Ad Hoc returns with their customary eclectic mix of music, and invite you to share in an evening of alphabetical delights celebrating music Made in Britain.

Frances Brock, Sue Lindley and John Gill are joined by guests Rosy Jamieson, mezzo-soprano, and Alasdiar Jamieson, Bass and Keyboard.

Tickets £14.00
Members & Friends of Fairfax House £12.00 (Includes wine reception at the interval)

Tickets for events can be purchased from the Fairfax House museum shop during opening hours or by ringing (01904) 655543

Extraordinary response from City of York Council to FOI request

Readers will recall that a few weeks ago we published a list of inquiries that York Councillors had recorded with the City of York Council.

The list (left) indicated how many inquiries individual Councillors had recorded during the 2015/16 year.

We submitted an Freedom of Information request asking for the up to date figures for the 2016/17 year.

The Council has now responded saying,

“This information is exempt under section 44 of the FOIA because it is considered that due to the forthcoming general election, it could affect public support for a particular party.

Should you wish to submit a new request for this information following the election, the council would be happy to consider this”.

Given that none of the York Councillors are candidates in the General Election we do wonder how voting intentions might be influenced by the publication of a factual list?

Perhaps the electors in the Hull Road and Micklegate Council by elections deserve to know how hard they might expect their new Councillors to work for them?

 

 

Micklegate Bar closed from June

Micklegate Bar

As part of a £1.5 million restoration scheme to preserve and protect York’s medieval city walls – announced by City of York Council last month – road closures will be needed in Micklegate to allow the restoration works to be carried out safely.

The scheme will involve replacing Micklegate Bar’s roof and guttering by stripping this all back, replacing the timberwork and installing stainless steel strengthening ‘shoes’ to roof beams.

Two new walkway gates will also be installed. This will allow the Henry VII Experience museum to remain open when the bar walls themselves are closed. During the works both stairways allowing people access onto the walls will remain open to pedestrians at all times.

Micklegate retailers and businesses were consulted in advance about the works and invited to attend meetings with the council. Letters were also sent to all premises in the area.

(more…)

Probe into NHS service quality in York

York Councillors will be given an insight into the several problems faced by the NHS in York over the winter period.

They will be told that the number of patients increased with GP to hospital referrals up by as much as 19%.

NHS managers say that nationally it was one of the most challenging winters with the “lowest national performance since reporting began in 2004”.

There was  a “surge pressure” from Christmas Day to the New Year (footfall increase of 14% +522; ambulance increase 9% +123, compared to same period in 2015 -16).

Staff sickness, in particular on bank holidays, limited the options for additional cover

Emergency Care Standards (4 hour waits) targets in A & E were not met. They hit a record low point in January but performance had improved by March.

Hospital report on A & E performance

Lack of hospital beds continues to be blamed on delayed discharges (bed blocking) with over 5000 bed days being lost.

The report  is bound to fuel demands for higher investment in NHS services. It has emerged as a key issue in the current General Election campaign

Electric vehicle recharging wrangle in York

There is confusion today about whether private vehicles can access the rapid recharging points at Monks Cross and Poppleton Bar.

The points were funded from a government(OLEV)  scheme but are largely used by the  First electric Park and Ride buses.

It appears that electric car drivers have been turned away from the points although they are shown as available on a vehicle charging “app”. The Councils iTravel web site says that vehicle charging points can be found on this map (click)

Apparently the Monks Cross rapid charge points have been recorded on the National Charge Point Register has having restricted access for cars. The Council says that a third party app has been advertising these as ‘available’ which has caused confusion for local EV drivers.

In response to an FOI enquiry the Council has confirmed that the dedicated chargers were used on 1157 occasions, using 22025 kWh of energy, during the first quarter of 2017

The Council says,

“the Monks Cross Park&Ride supervisors are able to permit cars to charge where this does not impact the bus service and this does happen occasionally however the buses have charge point priority as they have no viable alternative location. For cars, the nearest rapid charger is one mile away at The Sports Village and EV drivers are recommended to use these facilities instead”

.Range  anxiety is one of the main reasons for the slow take up of electric cars. Being certain that a charging  point will be available is of major concern for drivers.

Electric vehicle public rapid charging points

There are other charging points in York many of which are located on car parks and at hotels

New homes completed in York for downsizing tenants

York’s housing stock has had a boost with eight tenant households looking forward to moving into newly completed council homes.

The two-bedroomed apartments at Fenwick Street off Bishopthorpe Road have been built for tenants looking to downsize to more manageable homes. The aim is to free much-needed, larger council houses for growing families.

Work started at Fenwick Street in spring 2016 by contractor ESH Property Services. The eight flats have been built so that they can be adapted to meet tenants’ changing needs as they age. One has already been modified to meet a new tenant’s requirements.

All will achieve high levels of fuel efficiency through insulation and the highly-efficient heating systems.

Martin Farran, director of adult social care and housing at City of York Council, said: “We have constructed high quality properties to benefit present and future tenants. Not only can they be altered to meet a tenant’s changing circumstances, but the build has created local jobs and important new assets for the city.”

John Doherty, Contracts Manager from ESH Property Services, said: “We are proud of the product the team has delivered and, in particular, the quality of finish achieved. The aspect and views to the rear of the properties are particularly pleasing features and will ensure that these properties remain highly desirable and sustainable for the council moving forward.”

York to be badly hit by “Dementia Tax”

The Tories plan to force sick elderly people to sell their homes to pay for care cost will affect York residents more than any other City in the country.

Figures released today suggest that, because of relatively high local house prices, 99% of those accessing care services would lose ownership of their homes.

Under the Tory plans, revealed when they published their General Election manifesto last week, the homes would be sold to pay off any care cost debt, when a patient died.

Tim Farron, Leader of the Liberal Democrats, has launched a national movement calling on people, irrespective of their party affiliation, to stop the Conservatives’ planned Dementia Tax.

It comes alongside Liberal Democrat research that reveals that across England, 9 out 10 homes could be eligible for sale to meet Theresa May’s Dementia Tax.

Tim Farron is writing to key organisations about the campaign, including David Cameron as President of Alzheimer’s Research UK.

Writing to the leaders of leading health and older peoples’ charities, Tim Farron said:

“The measure of a Government is how they treat the most vulnerable in our society.  I don’t think that the Conservatives are unaware of the impact of their plans but they chose to ignore the human cost.

“Every elderly person that needs care should receive it in the best place for them and not be fearful of those mounting, limitless costs. I am determined that we ensure that Theresa May drops the so-called ‘Dementia Tax’ and implement a cap on the cost of care.

“Caring for our elderly must be above party politics and that is why I want to urge anyone who opposes the Conservatives’ plans to come together to stop it.

“We must resist this plan and challenge would-be Conservative MPs to reject and stop it.

“As a first step, I am urging people to sign up at dementiatax.org.uk  to help. I hope you will urge the supporters of your organisation to do the same. Together we can stop the so-called ‘Dementia’ Tax

Points

  • Across England, 9 out 10 homes could be eligible for sale to meet Theresa May’s Dementia Tax.  
  • This includes:
    • in the South East in Oxford, 98% homes could be liable
    • in London, Richmond upon Thames, only 7 out of 476 homes sold would be exempt
    • in the North West, Stockport, 92% of homes could be liable
    • This year to date only 1 home sold out of 356 in Theresa May’s local authority would be exempt
    • In the poorest 10 local authority areas, an estimated 50% of homes could be liable to meet the ‘dementia tax’
    • For instance;
    • The local authority with the lowest average salary (Blackpool), where 52% of homes could be liable

click to sign

Latest planning applications for the Westfield Ward

Council try to avoid producing Environmental Impact Assessment for Lowfields school site.

Below is the latest planning application received by the York Council for the Westfield ward.

Full details can be found by clicking the words highlighted in blue

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click to access

Former Lowfield School Dijon Avenue York

Screening opinion in respect of the demolition of the existing building and proposed mixed use development

Ref. No: 17/01139/EIASN 

NB The Council is now talking about building a total of 191 dwellings on the site. It appears that they had not included the self-build and communal living properties in their last proposal which was for a maximum of 135 dwellings. This number of dwellings on a restricted site could only exacerbate parking problems in the area

This application seeks confirmation that a full EIA will not be required for the development. It singularly fails to recognise the amount of wildlife supported by the site, nor the fact that public access to the playing fields was restricted by the Council in 2011 on a temporary basis to avoid vandalism problems. Ironically restricting access has allowed wildlife to flourish.

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5 Askham Croft York YO24 3FD

Single storey side and rear extension

Ref. No: 17/01131/FUL 

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17 Osprey Close York YO24 2YE

First floor front extension

Ref. No: 17/01071/FUL 

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 Representations can be made in favour of, or in objection to, any application via the Planning on line web site.  http://planningaccess.york.gov.uk/online-applications/

The Council now no longer routinely consults neighbours by letter when an application is received