Action to tackle Askham Bar flytipping

Local Lib Dem councillor Stephen Fenton is leading efforts to tackle flytipping at the recycling banks at the Askham Bar Tesco car park.

There are persistent problems with household waste being dumped here, and there is an accumulation of litter around the recycling banks. The popularity of the clothes and shoes recycling banks has also led to bags of donations being dumped next to the full bins.

Dumping at Yorkshire Air Ambulance clothing banks

Household waste flytipped

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On 20 August Stephen arranged a meeting on site with representatives from Yorwaste, City of York Council and Tesco to discuss the problems and what can be done to improve the situation. Actions arising from the meeting included checking on the frequency of emptying recycling banks which are sometimes overflowing, and exploring options for more proactive enforcement to increase the chances of catching flytippers.

It was noted that the return of the second cardboard bank has helped to improve matters in recent weeks.

Stephen commented  “There are many parties involved in the maintenance and management of this site – for example, a range of different companies are responsible for emptying the variety of banks. It was good to get some of the key players together to discuss the problems and try to come up with a plan.

“It’s important that when flytipping is spotted, the council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement Team is notified via neo@york.gov.uk or tel. 01904 551555. They can then look for evidence which will help to identify the cuplrit.”

Stephen has made contact with two of the companies responsible for emptying the donation banks for Yorkshire Air Ambulance (clothes) and Variety Club (shoes) following a build-up of donations piled up against the bins.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The response from both firms was positive. SOEX UK Ltd, which manages the shoe bank, confirmed that it will take steps to ensure that it is emptied every Tuesday. Bag It Up Ltd, which manages the clothes bank, stated that they are looking into these issues and tweaking schedules to get on top of any sites that have overflow issues.

Stephen said “I’m pleased with the quick response from the firms that look after the clothing and shoe banks, and their commitment to action. If any residents want to donate but find that the banks are full, please take the bags home and do not dump them next to the bins.”

Askham Bar litter bin relocated

A litter bin next to the Askham Bar recycling banks has been removed, after it became a magnet for persistent flytipping.

Flytipping at Askham Bar

The bin has been relocated to Thanet Road, next to the bus stop opposite Eason View. Rather than relocate the old battered bin, it has been upgraded to a new dual use litter / dog waste bin.

New bin on Thanet Road

Councillor calls for early engagement on Askham Bar housing plans

Local Lib Dem councillor Stephen Fenton has called on the council to undertake early and meaningful engagement with local residents on plans to build homes on the former Askham Bar Park & Ride site.

Cllrs Stephen Fenton and Ann Reid at the former P&R site, which is currently used as a pay & display car park

Cllr Fenton spoke at a meeting of the Council’s Executive on 12 July, which approved a proposal to undertake detailed design work to develop and submit a planning application for mixed tenure housing on the former Park & Ride site.

The Askham Bar scheme is part of a wider housing package that will see council-owned land and investment from the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) utilised to directly deliver approximately 550 homes on six sites of which 40% will be affordable housing. This represents 20% more affordable homes compared to the number that would be delivered by the market if they were to comply with planning policy.

Cllr Fenton said “The site is currently an eyesore, and so it is good to see some progress being made on developing the site to provide much-needed new homes.

“But before the planning application is submitted, I want to see meaningful engagement with ward councillors, local residents and other interested parties.

“There are already significant issues in the Askham Bar area in terms of traffic congestion, which has a number of impacts such as on bus timetable reliability. I am keen therefore that we take this opportunity to look at the highways infrastructure and how we might make changes to help improve matters for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians.”

Cllr Fenton also sought clarification that the number of homes planned for the site is in line with the number (60) included in the draft Local Plan. He also asked what was happening with the proposed demolition of garages and construction of six new council homes on Chaloners Road, with a suggestion that the two schemes be progressed together.

Six new council homes planned for Chaloners Road

It is anticipated that the design and planning of the Askham Bar scheme will begin this summer, with a view to getting on site in Autumn/Winter 2019.

 

Askham Bar sports pitch application approved

On 11 July members of the council’s Planning Committee voted unanimously to approve plans to establish new sports pitches on land off Tadcaster Road.

Concerns raised by some residents about the impact on wildlife were addressed in the officer report on the application:

“The site provides good habitat for a range of species including foraging and commuting bats, hedgehogs and nesting birds. The ecology surveys did not find evidence of great crested newts or water voles. Hedgehogs are known to be present on site which is used as a release site for a local hedgehog rehabilitator. Hedgehogs are a species “of principal importance for the purpose of conserving biodiversity” covered under section 41 (England) of the NERC Act (2006). Hedgehogs are nocturnal animals and it has been confirmed that the pitches will not be used after dark, with no floodlighting. The hedgerows and boundary scrub on site that would be used for daytime shelter and hibernation will be retained.”

 

Askham Bar sports pitch plan to be considered by Planning Committee

At its meeting on Wednesday 11 July, the council’s Planning Committee will consider an application for sports pitches to be created on land off Tadcaster Road, behind the BP garage. The application is described as follows:

“Change of use from agricultural holding to natural turf sports pitches including erection of changing facilities, installation of sub surface land drainage and associated soft landscaping and formation of emergency/maintenance vehicle access road”

The officer report recommends that “Delegated Authority be given to Officers to approve the proposal subject to an acceptable agreement being reached in respect of the provision off-site car parking and subject to any additional conditions that may be required to secure this provision.”

 

 

Summer evening Park & Ride service from Askham Bar extended

Users of York’s popular Park & Ride service will be able to enjoy the attractions in the city centre for longer this summer after it was agreed that the timetable should be extended into the evenings for a ten-week trial period.

City of York Council and bus operator First York have agreed that Service 3 buses from the Askham Bar Park & Ride site will operate until 10.20pm on summer evenings.

The move will give visitors to the city more time to enjoy its diverse range of attractions, as well as making it possible for those attending Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre, which will be open next to Clifford’s Tower from Monday 25 June to Sunday 2 September, time to catch the last bus back to the Park & Ride site after evening performances.

The last Service 3 Park & Ride bus from Tower Street currently departs at 8.05pm from Monday to Saturday and at 6.05pm on Sundays. For the duration of the ten-week trial, there will be additional departures every half hour up to 10.20pm. The buses will also stop at Rougier Street and at the Railway Station in the city centre.
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Askham Bar litter pick success

A team of volunteers joined councillors Ashley Mason and Stephen Fenton for a litter pick on Sunday 27 May at the old Askham Bar Park & Ride site and surrounding area. Over 25 bags of litter were collected.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Worryingly, a large number of discarded small silver flasks were found, which it is thought are being used for recreational ‘highs.’ The Police have been notified.


 

Askham Bar flytipping investigated and goes to court

In August 2017 Cllr Stephen Fenton took a photo (below) of flytipping at the Askham Bar recycling banks and reported it to City of York Council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement team. They investigated, and a case went to the Magistrates Court on 2nd January. The defendant failed to attend and so the Court issued a warrant for the person’s arrest.


It’s good to know that these cases are pursued where evidence can be found. Flytipping can be reported to neo@york.gov.uk for investigation.

Local groups benefit from Tesco ‘Bags for Life’ scheme

Community and voluntary groups in Dringhouses are set to benefit from the Tesco ‘bags for life’ scheme, where the money raised from the sale of carrier bags is used to fund local projects in communities across the UK.

The Dringhouses Scout Group recently secured a £4,000 grant from the scheme and the Revival  Residents Community Association is currently bidding for a grant. Local residents can support their bid at the Askham Bar Tesco store, where blue tokens can be deposited in the relevant bucket.