The Council has now published on their web site the comments of their Ecology and Countryside officer on the plan to extend Lincoln Court.
Comments of Council ecology officer March 2019
Contractors are currently ripping out the hedge on the school boundary of the site.
The officer states that a replacement hedge must be provided as part of any redevelopment.
There are also concerns about the displacement of bats.
One item, relating to the movement of small mammals like hedgehogs, will be of particular interest to local residents who are concerned not just about this proposal but also the plans for the nearby Lowfields site.
There a developer (Yorspace) is planning to replace the existing railings with a close boarded fence. Effectively such fences hinder the free movement of hedgehogs
The Ecology officer hasn’t commented on the Lowfield proposal although the wildlife issue has been highlighted by the Lowfields Action Group as part of their objection.
Hedges are being ripped out by contractors in preparation for the start of building works at Windsor House and Lincoln Court.
The new disabled centre, which will replace Windsor House, does have planning permission. It is understandable that developers Sewells will want to remove the hedges before the bird nesting season starts.
Work to the rear of Lincoln Court is more controversial. A planning permission granted in December was found to be flawed. This forced the Council, to submit a new application which has yet to be determined. It has attracted a lot of objections including a significant one from Sport England.
It is therefore premature to undertake work in that area.
Copies of the Lincoln Court planning application together with details of objections can be found by clicking here
Contractors removing hedge from school playing field boundary
Hedge to side of Windsor House has already been removed
The expectation was that the reinstatement of verges in the City following the UFO broadband works would have seen grass growing back by now. Recent rain has provided ideal growing conditions but there is little sign of life so far!
Dust bowl verges on Gale Lane. Still no grass
Tithe Close snicket has been cleared of litter and graffiti
Litter a problems on several snickets at present like this one on The Reeves.
More hedges blocking public footpaths
Hedge stops passengers waiting at Askham Lane bus stop from seeing approaching buses
Nettles another threat for bus passengers. No sign of the Council treating weeds so far this summer
Trolley area on Acomb car park needs a good clean up
The Council has finally got round to removing the self seeded bushes which blocked sight lines from the bus shelter on Askham Lane. The bushes had grown to the point where the footpath was being impeded in summer. Now the original hedge around the field should be able to reassert itself.
Following work by Cllrs Sheena Jackson (pictured) and Andrew Waller several potholes on Foxwood Lane were filled in by workmen this morning.
Sheena with the potholes that she reported
Workmen filling in potholes today
We’ve been out and about in the Foxwood area. We’ve found some issues which we’ve reported for attention.
Some problems – like nettles overgrowing the footpath on Bellhouse Way (from a private garden) – reoccur every year.
Damaged verges in Wenham Road need bitmacing. Not much sign of proactive management or investment in this part of the Rowntrees estate unfortunately
There has been a deterioration the appearance of the Rowntree estate (Wenham Road/Teal Drive) over the last few months. One problem is lack of garden maintenance – a return to the issues of 3 years ago . Some properties facing the Foxwood Park are virtually inaccessible because of overgrown hedges. Many verges are damaged and really need to be bitmaced. We hope that the residents association and Councillors will intervene to get an improvement.
Weed growth in the Stirrup Close area suggests that the Councils treatment programme has not been successful again this year
A lot of detritus on the Bellhouse Way footpath between Acomb Wood Drive and Bellwood Drive. The path also needs resurfacing
Hedge on Osprey Close needs trimming back from the public footpath
Hedge on Houndsway amenity area still hasn’t been trimmed by the Council. It was reported last November. Strangely the hedge on the other side of the area has been cut!
Continuing problems, with hedges blocking public footpaths, were raised by Andrew Waller at a recent Council meeting.
He asked how many reports the Council receives each year about footpaths being blocked and how long it takes to remedy problems.
Askham Lane hedge overgrown for four months
Oldman Court path blocked since September
He was told that “Council officers don’t currently keep records of the numbers of vegetation complaints and how they are progressing.
The estimated numbers are in the region of 500 to 600 per year mainly concentrated during the summer months.
When a complaint is made, if the address is given a letter is sent out asking the owner to rectify the situation. If the address is vague a site visit will normally be made next time someone is in the area and then a letter sent.
If no further complaints are made it is assumed that the problem has been put right. If a further complaint is made then a second letter is sent with a more formal instruction to put the situation right otherwise we (CYC) may carry out the works and recharge the costs to the owner. If there is no improvement then an instruction to cut the vegetation is issued and the cost recharged”.
We remain concerned that effective action hasn’t been taken to cut back hedges like the one adjacent to the field on Askham lane 9this has been trimmed on the road side by the Council in the past).
We are considering referring long outstanding problems for the attention of the Local Government Ombudsman
The weather is only partly responsible for problems with weed growth, hedges blocking footpaths and excessive verge cuttings
Grass cut by Council contractors but hedge left
The Council was very late in awarding its maintenance contractor for elderly and disabled tenants this year and the contractors have found it impossible to catch up.
Drains blocked by weeds and detritus
The Councils Highways Inspectors seem to have been less effective this year in chasing up residents who allow their hedges or trees to block public footpaths.
Weeds growing everywhere in Acomb
But perhaps the biggest eyesore is weed growth. In parts of Acomb nettles and thistles are now over a foot high and are clearly damaging footpaths and roads.
Overgrown hedges blocking street signs
We understand that a contract has just been awarded by the Council for the application of weed killer but it is likely to be at least a couple of weeks before all areas are treated (and longer again before the weeds die away)
Overgrown hedges blocking footpaths