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Residents anger over Council plan to remove security railings

Local residents in Lowfields are objecting to plans to remove the railings which protect their garden boundaries.

The plan by the Council to replace the railings was first revleaed on tyhis site at the weekend.

According to their Facebook site, the Lowfields Residents Action Group is leading a campaign to get the Council to consult neighbours on their plans.

Their main concerns are about the appearance of a new fence, its impact on the natural environment, damage to existing landscaping and the money which would be wasted if the existing railings – which are in good condition – were junked.

Separately the Council has announced today that it will commence construction work on the site in two weeks time.

It is writing to residents telling them about a consultation meeting which is taking place next week and which will involve the Wates building contractors

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The Residents Group has responded saying, “We think this is pretty short notice for a consultation event.

The letter includes an evasive reference to “Yorspace” who we understand are still struggling to find funding for their communal living site.

It also pointedly doesn’t admit that the Council have failed to find a developer for their proposed elderly persons care home.

Nothing more either, on the public buildings (Health Centre and Police station) which seem less and less likely now to happen.

This means that there is no chance of building work on the whole site being finished within 2 years”.

Progress on unearthing traffic islands

We reported earlier in the summer that several traffic island had become overgrown. This was partly due to an accumulation of silt. It appears that the islands were not being hand-swept.

The Council is now beginning to catch up with a programme aimed at clearing the islands of detritus. Those on Foxwood Lane, for example, are now looking tidy.

A more structured approach to street cleansing is needed though as some islands, including those on the A1237, are not being routinely cleansed

Street cleansing standards on the Chapelfields estate do vary a lot.

Elsewhere the Foxwood Residents Association is set to discuss street cleansing standards in their neighbourhood at their monthly meeting which is being held tomorrow. Residents have questioned whether the sweeping frequencies, promised by the Council on its web site, are actually being undertaken.

Maps showing how often individual streets should be manually or mechanically cleansed are published on the Councils web site.

Bothered by unwanted sales telephone calls?

Anti scam campaign by North Yorkshire Police. This seems like a good idea

Nearly 50% of all frauds reported to North Yorkshire Police, the initial contact between the fraudster and victim is via the telephone.

You would not dream of going of leaving your house or car without making sure it was secure, so in this day and age why would you have a telephone that does not have call screening or call blocking functions?

Put a stop to these calls and become #ScamAware with a free trueCall call blocker from Friends Against Scams

Apply today at: www.FriendsAgainstScams.org.uk/CallBlocker

What’s on in York: The Literary Landscapes of Winifred Holtby with Dr Ruth Beckett

York Explore

October 17th @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

 £5

Discover the ways in which Winifred Holtby drew upon the people and landscape of the East Riding to explore themes which transcend time and place in South Riding.

‘The Literary Landscapes of Winifred Holtby’ will explore the relationship between people and place, looking especially at the influence of the East Riding on the novels of Winifred Holtby. Extending from the Yorkshire Wolds to the vast expanse of Holderness, as well as suburban Cottingham and further afield, it is a landscape which is as much a mindset as a geographical location, shaped by history and social expectation as well as by the characters themselves. Though the main focus will be on South Riding, reference will also be made to Anderby Wold, A Crowded Street and other writings of Winifred Holtby

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Delays dog new Newbury Avenue bungalows

The five new bungalows being built by the York Council on Newbury Avenue are now several weeks late. The contract was supposed to be completed in early September.

Work still going on at the bungalow site on Newbury Avenue

The contract at the site has a value of £3/4 million.

The development was a controversial one because the Council declined to make adequate alternative off street parking space available for the former renters of the garages which used to occupy the site.

The development was delayed last year following a mix up over the relocation of a telecoms cabinet.

Planning application for new St George’s Field car park submitted.

Plans for the new St George’s Field multi-storey car park and coach park have been submitted and are available for viewing and comments as part of the next steps in the Castle Gateway project.

The submission of the planning application for St George’s Field is a major milestone in the delivery of the regeneration of the Castle Gateway. Once complete, the new car park will allow for the permanent closure of Castle Car Park, to create an expanse of new high quality public space for the city.

The relocation of the car parking would also remove a significant number of car journeys from inside the inner ring road, helping residents and visitors get around more sustainably in this part of city.

The planning application has been developed through a range of in depth public engagement events that took place throughout the spring and summer to explore the design options for the multi-storey car park and public spaces..

The new, modern four-storey car park would provide 372 large car parking spaces over 5 levels, with the fifth level of parking situated on the roof. 15 % of the parking spaces will be for electric vehicle charging with the ability to increase these as demand grows.

City of York Council have worked closely with the Environment Agency and  Historic England, to ensure the proposed plans have minimal impact on the functioning floodplain and surrounding heritage, creating high quality architectural design. Vehicle and pedestrian access at first floor level of the car park means it would continue to be in use even when the River Ouse is in flood.

After the planning application has been validated by the council’s planning team in the coming days, it will be available to view at www.york.gov.uk/planning under reference number 19/02063/FULM

Further information can be found on the My Castle Gateway project at www.york.gov.uk/CastleGateway

The new car park would be funded through a new residential development on the site of the now demolished Castle Mills Car Park. As part of the plans a new public bridge spanning the River Foss would connect Piccadilly and the rear of the Castle Museum, opening up a planned cycle and pedestrian route along the river into town.

The planning application for the residential development on the site of the Castle Mills building, providing new riverside apartments for sale, council housing and a pedestrian/cycle bridge across the Foss can be expected later in October.

Councillor Nigel Ayre, executive member for finance and performance, said:

“The planning application for St George’s Field Car Park marks a key stage in the Castle Gateway regeneration. The Castle Gateway area offers a great opportunity to put family-friendly public spaces, better transport links and places for York businesses at the heart of the city.


“The design of St George’s Field car park is built on extensive public engagement, bringing together the diverse range of opinions on an important part of our city. The application is now open for comments, so please take a look and participate in this important process.”

The proposed building includes living walls, a feature external staircase, and solar panels. New government regulations that have been introduced since the plans were last shared with the public have restricted the use of timber cladding on car parks, so the plans propose an  alternative natural and sustainable material to achieve the same effect alongside the green ‘living’ wall.

Action needed, Action taken

Mixed outlook on several outstanding public service issues in west York

We’ve reported a broken utility sign at the top of Grange Lane
Exposed cables have been tied to street signs in Milner Street for several weeks now.
Graffiti and litter continue to blight the Grange Lane snickets
We’ve suggested that hard core be used to make footpaths in the Grange Lane Westfield Park usable in wet weather
New record holder for the largest weed award. This 3 metre monster in Dijon Avenue next to a telegraph pole.
Loose rubbish continues to blight the rear of Front Street
Overgrown snicket on Gale Lane becoming a crime concern. We”ve asked the Ward Councillors to act.
Reported yet again litter, detritus and weeds on the Tithe Close snicket. Issue recorded by the Council as “solved” Clearly not!
Weeds flourishing on Hotham Avenue
….and Foxwood Lane
….and School Street

….But weeds cleared from Dijon Avenue garage area by Council. Now looks very tidy.

What’s on in York: Debut Novel Launch – The Sins of Friendship

York Explore Library

October 16th @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm

 Free

Join local York author Joshua Lees for the launch of his debut Novel – The Sins of Friendship; the twisted tale of an ordinary person thrown into an extraordinary world.

Spend an hour with Local Author Joshua Lees at the launch of his debut novel. Get a sneak peek into the first chapter, meet the author, and get the chance to discuss and ask any questions you might have; as someone who’s read the novel or someone new to the series, all are welcome!
The Sins of Friendship is perfect for Teen readers, young Adults, and up. It’s the tale of an ordinary man who is drawn into an alternate realm built upon negative emotions, he has to set aside his fears to help save a dying world before it is devoured by a mad god.

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Do bus passengers get a fair deal in York?

After several stable years, we have seen some criticism recently of some bus services in the City. Changes to the number 12 service were poorly publicised following a late decision by the York Council to step in and save part of the service

Passengers in west York have criticised for a long time the lack of “real time” bus arrival information screens in the area.

Bus reliability stats, provided by tracking technology, are not shared with passengers, although a “one off” sample survey – due to be conducted in a few days time – does produce a snap shot of reliability.

One area that the York Council can help passengers with is the “bus stop experience”.

Unfortunately bus shelters, provided by the Council around 10 years ago, are now looking distinctly shabby.

The Foxwood Lane bus shelter has been re-purposed as an Arboretum. Weeds dangle from the gutters, and strangle the interior. The shelter is never cleaned, the perspex is opaque and the paint continues to peal.
The nearby shelter on Askham Lane is no better. At least the sight lines from the shelter are better this year as the Council actually cut part of the adjacent hedge in the spring. You can just about still see if a bus is on its way. Unfortunately they didn’t trim the hedge at the back of the shelter making cleaning and routine maintenance impossible. It is now very scruffy.
At least the weeds are held at bay on this Windsor Garth shelter. But it is rusting badly and also sports opaque windows.