City of York Council

                             Committee Minutes




20 July 2021


Councillors Aspden (Chair), Ayre, D'Agorne, Waller and Widdowson

In Attendance

Councillor Kilbane



14.         Declarations of Interest


Members were asked to declare at this point in the meeting any personal interests not included on the Register of Interests, or any prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interests, that they might have in the business on the agenda.  No additional interests were declared.




15.         Exclusion of Press and Public


Resolved:  That the press and public be excluded from the meeting should any discussion arise on Annex 1a to Agenda Item 9 (Outcome of the Feasibility Study into a Riverside Walkway and New Pedestrian Bridge over the Ouse) on the grounds that it contains information relating to the financial or business affairs of particular persons. This information is classed as exempt under Paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A to Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as revised by the Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006).




16.         Minutes


Resolved:  That the minutes of the Executive meeting held on 24 June 2021 be approved, and signed by the Chair as a correct record.




17.         Public Participation


It was reported that there had been one registration to speak at the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme.


Max Reeves, of the Helmsley Group, spoke on Agenda Item 9 (Outcome of the Feasibility Study into a Riverside Walkway and New Pedestrian Bridge over the Ouse).  He confirmed that Group’s commitment to work alongside the council on this project, and welcomed the chance it provided to re-establish Coney Street’s link to the river and drive positive change in the city.




18.         Forward Plan


Members received and noted details of the items that were on the Forward Plan for the next two Executive meetings at the time the agenda was published.




19.         City of York Council Recovery and Renewal Strategy - July Update


The Chief Operating Officer presented an update report for July 2021 on the council’s activities both directly in response to Covid-19 and to support recovery and renewal.


As at 6 July, the official 7-day rate of Covid cases in York was 414 per 100k population; higher than regional and national averages.  However, it was reported that regional and national rates had since increased, while the rate in York remained fairly static.  Rates were lower in the over-60s, and hospitalisations remained much lower than during previous peaks, reflecting the success of the vaccination programme.  82.1% of the city’s estimated adult population had now received their first dose of the vaccine and 57.5 % had received both doses.  The report went on to detail the removal of legal restrictions in line with Step 4 of the government’s Roadmap, and provided updates on the development of a Citizen’s Panel to support broader engagement and on York’s bid to the Levelling Up fund. 


Members commented favourably on the ‘Be Kind’ campaign, aimed at making people feel at ease in the city centre once restrictions were lifted, and the proposals for wider engagement with residents via the Citizen’s Panel.  The Chair highlighted the need to keep working together to keep York open, and for residents to take up the vaccine if eligible and be tested where possible.


Resolved:  That the contents of the report, and the further information provided at the meeting, be noted.



20.         Innovative Flood Resilience Programme


The Corporate Director of Place presented a report which sought approval to develop a business case for a project to deliver catchment-scale natural flood risk management solutions, in order to access funding awarded from Defra’s Innovative Flood Resilience Grant.


Following a successful bid, indicative funding of £5.8m had been allocated to deliver the six-year project, which aimed to provide increased flood resilience to North Yorkshire and York communities and reduce the impacts of flood events.  The project had been developed with a range of key partners, and a number of workshops and review meetings were being set up to inform the final business case.  City of York Council was the project funding lead, but project principles and outcomes would be established in conjunction with North Yorkshire County Council.  Members were invited to approve the ongoing work to develop the business case or advise on alternative approaches.


In commending the proposals to Members, the Executive Member for Environment and Climate Change highlighted the project’s link to the ongoing work with the Environment Agency on the York Five Year Plan and thanked the teams involved.


Resolved:  That the ongoing work to develop the business case to access the funding indicatively valued at £5.8m be supported.


Reason:     To support the delivery of the York and North Yorkshire Natural Flood Risk Management Innovative Flood Resilience project.




21.         Huntington Neighbourhood Plan – Referendum Result and Adoption


The Corporate Director of Place presented a report which set out the results of the Huntington Neighbourhood Plan referendum, and asked Executive to formally ‘make’ the Neighbourhood Plan (the Plan) and bring it into full legal force as part of the Development Plan for York.  The report had been considered by the Local Plan Working Group at their meeting on 13 July 2021.


The referendum had taken place on 10 June 2021, following Executive approval on 18 March.  Of the 1318 valid votes cast (a turnout of 17.1%), 1144 were in favour of accepting the Plan and 174 were against.  In the absence of any unresolved legal challenges or conflicts with EU obligations or Convention rights, the council was therefore legally obliged to ‘make’ the Plan.  The declaration of the referendum result was attached as Annex A to the report and the Regulation 19 Decision Statement, for publication following the Executive’s decision, as Annex B.


Members thanked Huntington Parish Council and all those involved in producing the Plan.


Resolved:  (i)      That the results of the referendum be noted and that the Huntington Neighbourhood Plan be formally ‘made’.


                   (ii)      That the Decision Statement attached at Annex B to the report be published in accordance with Regulation 19 of the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2021 (as amended).


Reason:     To allow the Neighbourhood Plan to progress in line with the Neighbourhood Planning Regulations.




22.         Outcome of the Feasibility Study into a Riverside Walkway and New Pedestrian Bridge over the Ouse


The Director of Housing, Economy and Regeneration presented a report which set out initial feasibility findings in relation to potential infrastructure and regeneration proposals for the Coney Street and associated riverside area of the city centre, together with proposals for the next stage of exploratory work.


A summary of the feasibility report prepared by Building Design Partnership (BDP) was attached as Annex 1, and the full report as exempt Annex 1a.  The study had examined options within four zoned areas between Lendal and Ouse Bridge, as detailed in paragraphs 12-18 of the cover report.  Based on the findings, it was proposed to focus on the riverside walk from the existing boardwalk outside City Screen to Ouse Bridge.  Although a pedestrian bridge was technically feasible, it would need to be considered within the wider strategy of the Local Transport Plan 4 (LTP 4).  A walkway connecting the City Screen boardwalk to Lendal Bridge was considered too problematic, due to complex land ownership and the conservation impact on the Guildhall setting.  It was therefore recommended that officers continue to explore options for the route identified and work with Helmsley Group to shape the public benefits of the proposed Riverside Quarter redevelopment.  To support delivery of the project, it had been included in the council’s submission to the government’s Levelling Up fund.


Members welcomed the report and the progress made towards developing an idea that had been under discussion for many years.  In commending the proposals to Members, the Executive Member for Finance & Performance thanked York MPs for their support of the funding bid. Having noted the comments made on this item under Public Participation, it was


Resolved:  (i)      That the outcomes of the YNYER LEP funded feasibility work on a riverside walkway to the rear of Coney Street and options for a new pedestrian bridge over the Ouse be noted.


Reason:     To note the options and opportunities for opening up the Ouse riverside and creating new walking routes from the station to the city centre.


                   (ii)      That the inclusion of the riverside walkway in the council’s Levelling Up fund bid be noted.


Reason:     To be aware that the riverside walkway has formed part of the council’s first round funding bid to the government’s Levelling Up Fund, with the outcome due to be announced in autumn 2021.


                   (iii)     That officers continue to work with the private sector owners of riverside properties to shape the emerging riverside walkway proposals and negotiate any necessary commercial relationships with neighbouring landowners and developers for Executive approval.


Reason:     To ensure the developer proposals for a new walkway, as part of the emerging Riverside Quarter development, fit with the city’s strategies and ambitions and optimise social benefits.


                   (iv)    That approval be given to undertake any necessary early stage surveys and feasibility work on the council-owned 25-27 Coney Street as part of the wider private sector redevelopment proposals to be funded from existing city centre regeneration budgets and staff resources.


Reason:     To ensure that the council can use its landholding interest to influence the Riverside Quarter development proposals and maximise the commercial return from any potential future development.








Cllr K Aspden, Chair

[The meeting started at 5.30 pm and finished at 6.13 pm].





















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