Parish update – August 2020

The Parish AGM will be held on 26th August at 7.30pm in the village hall car park to complete the statutory functions of the Parish Meeting (approval of accounts, minutes, election of officers, etc.)

These notes are to update Oswaldkirk parishioners on current parish news in the absence of a General Parish Meeting due to Covid restrictions. The previous Parish Meeting was held on 23rd October 2019.

1. Planning

(a) Ref. No: NYM/2020/0353/FL Removal of conservatory, alterations, construction of extension and dormer window reconfiguration of external steps and creation of raised terrace (Received 3 June 2020) 39 Steps, Oswaldkirk Bank, Oswaldkirk Status: Registered

(b) Ref. No: 20/00718/HOUSE Erection of a single storey porch on east elevation (Received 7 August 2020) Pavilion House, The Terrace, Oswaldkirk Status: Registered Comments need to be sent to the planning office by 28th August

(c) Ref. No: NYM/2020/0554/CU Use of existing holiday park for 11 months of the year (closed 05 January to 03 February in any one calendar year) (Received 17 August 2020) Golden Square Caravan Park, Oswaldkirk Status: Registered Comments need to be sent to the planning office by 7th September

2. Traffic Issues

  • HGV Movements: Prior to the previous meeting Ian Mosey had requested six weeks grace until they could comply with their planning permission, in that vehicles should not leave the feedmill until 6.30am. The grace period ended on 9th November 2019 and since that date Mosey feed lorries have not, with a few exceptions, been moving through Oswaldkirk before 6.45am. The situation is being monitored but no further action has been deemed necessary to date. A small group from the village had planned to present and speak to a question on the problem of HGV movements through Oswaldkirk at the NYCC Area meeting in January, however the group did not attend this meeting.
  • Road Surface Conditions: There have been a number of comments made re the poor road surface condition on the corner and Oswaldkirk bank. These have been mainly regarding the uneven surface approaching the corner from both directions causing empty vehicles to rattle noisily and create considerable vibrations for properties alongside the bank. The lack of white lines on the corner is also a problem allowing some vehicles to dangerously cut the corner. Mr Coyne, Improvement Manager for NYCC Highways Dept. has again been contacted re these points and has again indicated that the bank resurfacing should be included in the 21/22 budget. An engineer has been asked to look into the road markings on the corner. Any improvement work will presumably have to wait until Freedom have completed their contract with the electric cables. Much patience is going to be required as they work along the Terrace and up Oswaldkirk Bank.
  • Safety/Speeding: A roadside barrier has been installed at the playground entrance as promised by Mr Coyne. PCSean Simpson walked the village with the chairman on 17th March to discuss and witness first hand speeding issues in the village. This was timed for 8.30am to see Ampleforth College drivers, however despite having a speed gun only one driver was observed exceeding the 30mph limit. PC Simpson’s advice was that making drivers aware of their speed was the best deterrent and advocated the use of Vehicle Activated Signs, VAS. VAS has to be purchased by the parish, approx £3000 inc VAT, and siting, which cannot be permanent, needs to be approved by the police. The parish would be liable for maintenance and public liability insurance for the signs. At the next parish general meeting we need to discuss if we think the problem we have warrants this level of expenditure and liability.

3. Village Website

Stuart Charman has successfully updated the village website to create greater flexibility and accessibility. In conjunction with the village hall all minutes and important documents are now stored on the site so that they can be viewed when necessary. This obviates the need to keep endless files of paper documents. The Parish Meeting is to repeat this process over the coming months whilst maintaining the availability of all documents for the statutory period. Our thanks go to Stuart for his work on this important project.

4. Village Bus Service

Written representation was made to Reliance Bus Company (with copies to Kevin Hollinrake MP and NYCC) requesting reinstatement of the previous service. A prompt response was received advising changes to the bus timetablehad been planned from April 2020. The subsequent coronavirus pandemic had a significant impact on public transport.The new bus timetable for the X31 service (which commenced 1 August 2020), shows that a number of weekday services to and from York have been reintroduced.

5. Malt Shovel

Unfortunately no further information has been received re a possible opening date or the future of the pub despite the considerable amount of remedial work that has been done to the exterior of the building.

6. Footpaths

Progress on the proposed Oswaldkirk to Ampleforth footpath has unfortunately ground to halt during the Covid period as staff connected with the project have been furloughed from the Ampleforth Estates Dept. Hopefully progress can be made in 2021 to enable the footpath to be granted.

Dela has made us aware of a number of old footpaths in the parish which appear on the 1897 O.S. Map. These footpaths have to be registered by the Environmental Agency before 2026 or be lost forever. Anyone interested in looking further into this should contact Dela.

7. 2021/2022 Budget

There will be no change in either next year’s budget or the parish precept. This leaves some monies in the account for small one-off remedial works in the village. A copy is attached which hopefully can be approved as and when we can have a full meeting.

8. Covid Helpers

Please can we underscore our thanks to all the volunteers who shopped and looked out for those shielding during the lockdown period. We hope the coverage was wide enough without being over bearing, however we welcome any suggestions as to how the service could be improved because, who knows if there will be a repeat this winter.

9. Other Items

  • Many thanks to Roger Wade for his expert work on refurbishing the village notice board.
  • There has been a suggestion that the installation of an electric car charging point be installed in the village whilst the rerouting of electric cables is being undertaken. The village hall car park and the Catholic church car park were suggested as possible sites. The village hall trustees feel that car parking space at the hall is limited and it should be restricted to use by hall users only. The Abbey have been contacted but have more pressing issues to deal with at the moment, so the idea will have to shelved for a year or two by when there will be more electric cars in the village.
  • The installation of a defibrillator, possibly at the entrance to the village hall car park is being costed so that the proposal can be put to a general parish meeting.
  • Improvements to the steps/path leading from Oswaldkirk Bank to the Millennium Way are being looked at, as is the possibility of a grant from the National Park for such work. If grant funding is very limited the work will have to be made to fit the cash we have available. Hopefully we can make a decision on this at the next meeting.
  • Some work has been done to try and eradicate the Petastises weed from Chestnut bank before it is sown with grass seed.

Many thanks to Sam and Mike for their conscientious work throughout the year and all
those who willingly help to keep Oswaldkirk ticking over.

John Wilkinson