39% of drivers on Wetherby Road exceeding 30 mph speed limit

It is over a year since the Police stopped using cameras to monitor traffic speeds on Wetherby Road in York,

30 mph sign lit wetherby Road 4th Jan 2015 1500 hours

The section of the road falling between the Ridgeway/Beckfield Lane junction and the end of the built up area, is notorious for problems with speeding.

The man difficulty arises for residents seeking to leave their driveways with an awkward bend reducing visibility.

About 8 years ago the Council installed flashing signs which illuminate when a passing vehicle exceeds the 30 mph limit.

It is probably time for these to be modernised with the type which shows the actual speed of the vehicle.

In a sample check of vehicle speeds on the road taken this week, 39% of those entering the City triggered the sign. This is slightly higher than a similar survey found (38%) in 2011.

On the outbound carriageway, 31% were found to be exceeding the speed limit. In 2011, 42% were exceeding the limit on the same section of road.

We think that it is time for the police to recommence their camera checks in the area.

Traveller (Gypsy) and Showmans Yard York locations revealed

Proposed traveller site on Wetherby Road

Proposed traveller site on Wetherby Road

Despite a crude attempt by the Council to disguise their true intentions it has become clear that the site for a duplex 30 pitch traveller (gypsy) caravan site is on Wetherby Road. Ref GT1 on the above map.

Local Plan extract click to access

Local Plan extract click to access

The Council referred to the location as “Moor Lane”.

The site is located halfway between the edge of the City and Rufforth and is near the Harewood Whin waste disposal site.

It is the field that was to have become a salvage and reuse centre when the Beckfield Lane recycling centre closed. That project was jettisoned by the Council’s Labour administration in 2012 and it is now clear that they had other plans for the area.

Many residents will be concerned that there has been no consultation about these proposals which were omitted from last years document.

In the revised Local Plan the proposed “Showman’s Yard” site has been moved from Wetherby Road to Elvington with a note added saying that any other capacity could  be provided on industrial estates.


Solar farm planned for Knapton Moor

Solar Farm site click to enlarge

Solar Farm site click to enlarge

1.8 hectares of land off Wetherby Road (Site 772) could be turned into a solar farm. The area of land is located near to Harewood Whin.

The Council report indicates what criteria have to be met by these farms which generate electricity from solar panels (similar in principle to those now found on many household roofs).

They are not as controversial as wind farms, being silent and relatively unobtrusive. Security at the sites is high though.

Similar sites are planned for Malton Road and Towthorpe

Housing building sites – more information released on threats to green field sites

Wetherby Road site. Click to enlarge

Wetherby Road site. Click to enlarge

The York Council has released more details of the assessments that it has made of requests by landowners for particular sites to be considered for development.

They include assessments for some sites, which were rejected, and are not being considered at its meetings on the 17th April  and 23rd April 2014

They are relevant though in so far as they provide an indication of the landowner’s development aspirations. They are likely to reappear at the Public Inquiry later in the year when owners will try to have additional development land added to the Plan.

Lowfields school playing fields threat click to enlarge

Lowfields school playing fields threat click to enlarge

39 sites, including one off Askham Lane, were rejected because they failed to respect the natural environment; two were rejected because they were on open space, while 21 had poor transport links and/or access to services

The proposals included the land (site ref 220) on Wetherby Road – near Knapton – originally suggested as a “Showman’s Yard” site. Now the owners want to build housing there. Worryingly the reason given by the Council officials for opposing development is the “lack of public transport”. No mention is made of its green belt credentials.

26 sites failed a “technical evaluation”. These included land to the west of Chapelfields (ref 778) which was rejected on grounds of landscape value and potential archaeology.

Land near Chapelfields under threat of development. click to enlarge

Land near Chapelfields under threat of development. click to enlarge

There is a similar list of sites rejected for Employment/Retail use.

Askham Bryan freight depot click to enlarge

Askham Bryan freight depot click to enlarge

Council officials have reviewed  development boundaries at several sites put forward last year.

Notably a plan by the Council itself to build on the playing fields of Lowfields School (as well as on the previously developed footprint of the school buildings) has been rejected.

Officials point out that the field enjoys a lot of informal recreational use.

They do, however, rather ominously claim that the playing fields may in future be “taken over” by a private sports club!

Officials also rule out the development of even more of the open space between Woodthorpe, Foxwood, Chapelfields and the ring roads (site 791) and the rest of Acomb Moor (site 792) although the partial development of the moor still remains part of the draft Plan.

Approved proposals include a “freight transhipment” and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) site on land between the A1237 and Askham Bryan. Although currently well screened by trees this is an elevated site which would be visible from several miles.

Another Harewood Whin odour warning for Acomb- Residents alerted about landfill works

PEOPLE living in the vicinity of a landfill site near York are being alerted they may experience a temporary odour in the air as work begins to restore another section of the site

The warning from operator Yorwaste comes a year after similar odour problems were reported by resident living in the Wetherby Road area.

Harewood Whin

In a media release the company says, “Yorwaste is currently undertaking work to restore a large area of completed landfill in the central part of their Harewood Whin site. This involves sealing the exposed waste with clay to control leachate generation and prevent landfill gas emissions.

The work can create disturbance, hence why the company is keen to alert residents in advance.

As part of this process new pipes have to be installed to collect the gas that is produced by waste in the landfill and it is at this stage that people living nearby may notice a slight and occasional odour.

Yorwaste says it is working as quickly but safely as possible to carry out this work, which will take place at various periods in October, and that the installation of the gas pipes should be completed by the end of November.

Steve Grieve, Managing Director of Yorwaste, said:

“We would like to apologise in advance for any inconvenience this work may cause to people living near Harewood Whin but it is important to stress that this work is essential and is necessary to avoid a repeat of last winter’s problems.

“As waste breaks down in a landfill it starts to produce a methane gas. This gas can be captured and converted into green electricity which is then exported directly to the national grid, thereby reducing reliance on fossil fuels.

“The planning and implementation of this work has been done in consultation with our regulator, the Environment Agency, and whilst there may be some short-term inconvenience, they are outweighed by the longer term environmental benefits.”