ResPark plea for Albemarle Road area

Residents say they want a ResPark scheme on Albemarle Road according to a report being considered by the York Council next week. The move comes in the wake of a move to open up a Multi User Games Area (MUGA) for public use at the nearby Millthorpe School.

Part of the planned restrictions which also affect Philadelphia Terrace and Ovington Terrace

The proposal includes the extension of parking restrictions in the area. As we reported some weeks ago, there is already an issue with the narrow highway being obstructed as a result of parking. It is thought that ResPark would reduce the pressures on the street.

Officials say that they cannot complete the ResPark processes before the MUGA opens in the summer bringing the prospect of increased disruption for at least a limited period of time.

Bishopthorpe Road parking restrictions

The meeting will also hear about representations made regarding the installation of a pedestrian refuge in the Bishopthorpe Road area.

Planned parking Restrictions on Bishopthorpe Road

The original proposals attracted a large number of objections.

The plans include the creation of a “clearway” from the racecourse to Bishopthorpe Village.

Time to tackle the hedges

We were pleased to here that the JoRo housing team have agreed to trim back hedges from Bellhouse Way near their Woodlands estate. The path there is obstructed as it is further round near The Gallops, although the problem there involves a more hazardous thorn hedge.

Some of the hedges to the rear of Foxwood Lane are also obstructing footpaths.

The Council will be dealing with these issues

JRHT will trim back hedges near their Woodlands estate
Gathering of milk bottles where the slide used to be on the Teal Drive playground. We’ve requested a tidy up
Thorn hedges like this one near The Gallops junction are a safety risk as darker nights approach
Householders are being asked to cut hedges back form public footpaths
With heavy rainfall expected, it is important to report blocked drainage gullies. This is a particular issue at the moment because of increased leaf fall and inadequate weed clearance during the summer months. Blockages can result in localised flooding

York cycle paths still obstructed

The Council’s PR department is saying that mechanical means may be used in future to remove weeds from footpaths and gullies in the City.

That can’t happen soon enough for most residents following the collapse of his years – chemical – treatment programme.

More of the cycle network is now subject to obstruction from overgrowing vegetation. It is a problem on Bishopthorpe Road near the Racecourse while the Naburn Lane path is impeded by nettles.

Naburn Lane path impeded by nettles

Timetable to address York public service woes needed

Anyone expecting the York Council’s Executive to take decisive action, to address declining public service standards at their meeting yesterday, will have been disappointed.

Despite a plea from Independent Councillor Mark Warters that a team be set up to deal with outstanding complaints, the Councils leadership remained tight lipped.

Cllr Warters was echoing a similar call from a growing number of Liberal Democrat supporters in the City

Many residents may conclude that there is something seriously wrong at West Offices.

Not only is there no timetable for addressing outstanding issues, but communications with residents are poor while many local Councillors (not all) fail to roll their sleeves up and tackle issues directly in their wards.

The York Council is no longer a “can do” organisation. It’s become a “maybe things will get better next year” type authority.

That won’t do. Its the kind of complacent attitude that has prompted a rise in more extreme political ideologies elsewhere in the country and abroad. It needs to be reversed, and quickly.

Not everything is bad, of course. Some individual Council officials are making limited progress in improving our streets as we show here.

The drainage channel on Foxwood Lane has been cleared
The Field Lane cycle track has been cleared of obstructions
But for every success there is a failure. The footpath on Hull Road remains obstructed despite pedestrians being forced onto the busy highway
and weeds still haven’t been treated even on streets where Councillors actually live!
New issues are emerging each day. This footpath on Field Lane, near the Hull Road junction, is now obstructed.
Not the Councils responsibility, but there has been a build up of litter on the Teal Drive “pocket park”. Reopened 6 weeks ago, it is being well used but it does need routine cleansing (or a litter bin). Reported to JRHT.

Weather brings bumper free harvest of berries

Still problems with hedges and trees blocking cycle and footpaths

The weather has had one positive influence. Brambles have flourished and their is an abundant free harvest available at places like little Hob Moor.
Unfortunately the adjacent cycle track on little Hob Moor can now be added to the list of obstructed paths. We’ve suggested to the Council that they need to organise a “task force” to go round removing overgrown branches and weeds from paths. They’ll also need to monitor highway trees as several are now banging on the sides and roofs of double deck buses as they pass.
A task group might also usefully clean off signage which is now unreadable. This sign is intended to help disabled users to access Hob Moor.

This sign is on Bellhouse Way
One piece of good news though is that the bramble bush which was blocking the little Green Lane footpath near the school entrance has been cut back.

York cycle paths obstructed

More hedges have been allowed to overgrow cycle routes in York.

In the main the problems arise from publicly owned hedges although some are the result of uncut domestic boundary hedges.

Another problem area is the York-Selby cycle track which is now obstructed in places.

The issues include thorn bushes overgrowing the tracks at eye height – a major problem this year.

Hedges overgrowing cycle tracks . From top left Tadcaster Road (near Tesco) thorn branch, Skiddaw, York Selby cycle track (2)

Call for clarity on public service standards from York Council

Perhaps not surprisingly, the change in political control of the York Councils affairs has produced an hiatus in decision making. The published forward programme of decisions which need to be made is very thin (click to link)

They new Council Leadership is perhaps wise to be cautious and to avoid the impulsive decision making, in the wake of election euphoria, which has been the undoing of some previous administrations

However, over a month after the polls, residents are little wiser on who now has responsibility for overseeing the different aspects of Council policy and performance. All we have are vague – and seemingly controversial in some quarters – job titles.

The result is a lack of clarity with crucial street level public service standards under pressure. Surprisingly few of the new intake of Councillors have so far communicated direct with the people who elected them. A “thank you for your support” leaflet was de rigueur until recently.

As we reported yesterday, some haven’t even included a contact telephone number on their Council web page yet (click link) NB. Councillors are recompensed for telephone costs through the “basic allowance” that they receive.

Meanwhile there are issues across the whole City which should be resolved quickly. The Councils PR team should be tasked with informing residents what will happen, when and to what quality.

Paths obstructed by overgrown hedges
Grass not cut (Bishopgate Street)
Weeds blighting streets
Verges need cutting

Blocked back alley causing problems for disabled scooters

Tree branches dumped from a garden renovation project at a nearby house are causing problems for residents in the Milner Street area.

The alley is used for access by local allotment holders, residents and people using disabled scooters.  Scooter access is currently blocked.

The obstructions – which have been reported to the Council – have been there since  Friday.

Cllr Andrew Waller has promised to get the alley cleared as quickly as possible.

 

Time for York Council to get out the pruning knife

A meeting on Friday will make a final recommendation on the York Council’s tree management policy.

click to read report

click to read report

The proposed policy was amended at a meeting last week but still fails to fully recognise the impact that 5 years of neglect have had on the City’s trees and bushes.

There are simply too many paths and roads obstructed by overgrown trees and bushes.

What is needed is a proactive management policy.

…..and where a dispute, between the Council’s staff and local residents cannot be resolved, then there needs to be an appeal process where conflicts can be settled as amiably as possible.

In the meantime the Council needs to get on and resolve some long standing issues

View from Askham Lane bus shelter. Reported two months ago the shelter is still engulfed by nettles and rubbish. It is impossible to see approaching busses from within the shelter.

View from Askham Lane bus shelter. Reported two months ago the shelter is still engulfed by nettles and rubbish. It is impossible to see approaching buses from within the shelter.

Rubbish accumulating in the shelter

Rubbish accumulating in the shelter

Detritus and weeds still a problem and Ridgeway

Detritus and weeds still a problem on Ridgeway

Meanwhile vandalised trees - which should have been replaced several years ago - are just ignored. This one is on the Tedder Road park

Meanwhile vandalised trees – which should have been replaced several years ago – are just ignored. This one is on the Tedder Road park

We've reported an uneven footpath on Ridgeway

We’ve reported an uneven footpath on Ridgeway