Extra noise patrols in run up to November 5th

Bonfire night can be fun for all, but if it creates nuisance to neighbours, the council can take enforcement action. That’s the message from City of York Council this autumn.

Midsummer bonfire against a night sky, moon

The council is reminding residents that garden waste can be disposed of by composting, recycling or through the green bin rather than heaping it on a bonfire – especially if it’s damp. Gardeners can use a topical check list of bonfire night do’s and don’ts relevant at any time of year:

• It’s best to burn materials when they are dry

• Household rubbish, rubber tyres or anything containing plastic foam or paint should never be burned and should be disposed of at York’s household waste recycling centres

• Never use engine oil, meths or petrol to light the fire

• Try and light fires when light wind will carry smoke away from your neighbours

Thanks to funding from the Safer York Partnership, the council will be running extra noise patrols to help tackle the problems of excessive bonfire smoke and noise in the days surrounding the event.

The council has put together a helpful list of do’s and don’ts for bonfire night events, but it will also be happy to offer practical advice to those holding their own fireworks events, if require d.

We will be running extra patrols on 5 November to help tackle any potential problems. Residents can call the council’s environmental protection unit (EPU) on 01904 551555.

Extra noise patrols will run on:

Thursday 31 October, 10pm-1am

Friday 1 November, 9pm-3am

Saturday 2 November, 9pm-3am

Sunday 3 November, 6-11pm

Thursday 5 November, 10pm-1am

Residents can contact the EPU on: Environmental.protection@york.gov.uk

There is more information on bonfires at: http://www.york.gov.uk/info/200360/air_pollution/486/air_pollution/2

Details of Tour de France cycle race in York confirmed

There were no surprises when the route that the Tour de France will take though York was revealed today in Paris.

click for enteractive map

click for enteractive map

The route will start from the Racecourse on Sunday 6th July taking in the City centre before leaving the City via Bootham, Clifton Bridge and Boroughbridge Road and making its way to Harrogate and Sheffield.

York taxpayers are already set to get a bill for over £1.4 million for the stage two depart event.

There were no surprises either when it was revealed that another Labour Councillor jumped at the chance to visit Paris today for the, somewhat less than historic, announcement of “Le route”.

Concern over 20% Illuminating York price hike

Liberal Democrats have raised concerns that ticket prices for this year’s Illuminating York Festival have significantly increased despite the 2012 event being branded a “disappointment”.

Illuminating York 2013

Illuminating York 2013

The Labour run City of York Council introduced charging for the – previously free – event last year. There were complaints about the £5 admission charge while Vic Reeves’ ‘Wonderland’ production received a backlash of negative comments and poor reviews.

However, the admission charges and £26,000 contribution from council funds meant the event made a £16,000 ‘profit’ which Labour promised would be “invested in next year’s event”.

Many hoped that this promise would see a return to the previous free admissions policy.

However, this year’s event, which will runs from October 30th – November 2nd, sees admission charges for the overall festival for adults increase from £5 to £6 and for under 16s from £1 to £5, with under 5’s still going free.

This means that a family of four, with two school-age children, would see their ticket costs rise by a whopping 83%.

The increase has been described as contrary to the Labour Leaders statements about the need to control the cost of living

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Roger McGough to appear at York Literature Festival 2014

Roger McGough

Roger McGough


One of the UK’s most famous and respected poets, Roger McGough, has been confirmed as one of the headline acts at York Literature Festival 2014, supported this year by City of York Council. McGough will perform at Joseph Rowntree Theatre on Friday 28 March 2014 at 7.30pm.

McGough is well known as a champion of poetry, and is the current presenter of BBC Radio 4’s Poetry Please. He was one of the Mersey Poets, alongside Brian Patten and Adrian Henri. As a member of pop group The Scaffold, he penned the lyrics for number one hit Lily The Pink in 1968. He also contributed to the script for The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine film. His work has appeared in over 50 books, and has included writing for children and autobiography. He is an honorary fellow of Liverpool John Moores University, fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and President of the Poetry Society. McGough was made an OBE in 1997 and a CBE in 2004.
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Residents survey cites poor highway maintenance as York’s biggest public service problem.

York residents survey results click to enlarge

York residents survey results click to enlarge

A survey completed by over 400 residents living in the west of York has revealed that highways and footpath maintenance are now the biggest cause for complaint.

73% thought that road and footpath maintenance had got worse in the City over the last 2 years.

The service was followed closely by ice clearance which 69% thought had got worse.

This is bad news for the Labour Council as the response come before the latest set of cuts to winter maintenance are implemented.

Parking provision was criticised by 65% with the large increases in parking charges introduced by the Labour Council likely to be the main influencing factor.

More than 50% of respondents also thought that litter, control of dogs, refuse collection and weed removal had got worse.

Only crime prevention fared relatively well, with 66% saying that the quality of the service was unchanged

The survey results will add pressure on the Council to support additional investment in street level public services at its meeting on Thursday.

Street level public service standards – plea to York Council next Thursday.

The York Council at a meeting next week will be asked to jettison its prestige expenditure plans and return to a more sensible economic policy.

Weeds need strimming at end of Ridgeway

Weeds need strimming at end of Ridgeway

A motion being put forward by the Liberal Democrats condemns deteriorating roads, footpaths and increasing litter as well as plans to reduce de icing services in winter.

It says that Labour’s decision to scrap the “York Pride” maintenance programmes means that many areas are now strewn with weeds and detritus.

Carriageway failed in Vesper Drive

Carriageway failed in Vesper Drive

Recent rain highlighted the impact that Labours decision to end the routine cleaning of gullies (road drains) is already having.

Meanwhile a rather disingenuous motion from Labour Cllr Burton, seeks to justify the bill for York staging the start of just one Tour de France stage.

The cost to taxpayers is already in excess of £1.5 million and rising.

The Labour backed motion says that any income to the Council from the event should be allocate to improve basic service standards.

It fails however to say that the income from a few hot dog stands is unlikely to make much difference.

The cost of the repairs back log on the City’s roads and footpaths alone now stands at over £20 million.

The Liberal Democrat motion reads
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Sky Ride local in York this weekend at York Sport village

Sky ride

A series of inclusive Sky Ride Local rides will be taking place in York thanks to a partnership between British Cycling and Sky.

Rides will take place on Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 October from 3pm until 5pm on the 1km purpose built cycling track at the York Sport Village on Hull Road

Get Cycling will have a fleet of adapted bikes for people to test out so everyone can take part.

Children aged 8 and above and adults can ride their own bikes, or use one of the adapted bikes.

Children aged under 8 are welcome to use tow bikes, trailers and frame seats. All riders are required to wear a helmet.

To sign up for one of the free, fun Sky Rides go to www.goskyride.com/York

5,500 cyclists took to the streets of York on September 14 for the first ever Sky Ride.