INTERESTING to see, as no doubt many other readers will have done (The Press, January 24) in the council’s advertisement regarding Lendal Bridge the following statement: “When the formal trial finishes on February 26 the bridge restriction will remain in force…”
Just another instance of when the powers that be ignore the electorate. Perhaps if they take notice of the front page of that edition they may be minded to site the wheel (why have something that everyone else has, can’t they find an attraction that is not so common?) in the centre of the bridge, thus preventing all the prospective tourists from declaring that they will not visit again, due to being fined, as well as recommending that their friends do not come to the city. Additionally, if the wheel were to come to the city again, a levy of £1 per passenger into the city’s coffers for the benefit of the residents would be welcomed by the voters.
R Hutchinson, Sherwood Grove, York.
•BEFORE City of York Council decides on continuing with the Lendal Bridge closure, my I suggest it considers the following which may appeal to the majority of the public.
Replace the cameras and the Northampton company with a sentry box (smart blue council livery – no tat) at either end of the bridge.
Then redeploy James Alexander and his deputy or the head of York Tourist Board for, say, two or three days a week to man same.
Sentries could advise unsuspecting motorists and hand out maps, or if motorist elects to cross, charge them £30 and hand them a voucher (free entry to local car park or attraction). Hang a swear box round the sentries’ necks – all donations to a local charity (this could change weekly).
The above would provide better value from Mr Alexander and his deputy, and with the penalty coming “straight from the horse’s mouth” rather than from the sly, anonymous camera, the “offenders” might feel less aggrieved. The York Tourist rep could just offer apologies and sympathy to York’s valued visitors. Job sorted!
Brian Howcroft, Bolton Percy, York.
•RECENTLY I inquired from a private-hire taxi driver how the restrictions on Lendal Bridge had affected his journeys in and around the inner city.
As expected, the area in and around the railway station and Lendal Bridge was easy because traffic was lighter; the inner ring road was more congested and took longer than before.
What shocked me most was that he has received a large number of fines for crossing the bridge.
Apparently the cameras cannot distinguish cars and private hire vehicles. “Not a problem – just an annoyance having to send them back,” he said.
I wonder how many more of these penalty notices have been wrongly issued.
D Deamer, Penleys Grove Street, Monkgate, York.
• I THANK Coun James Alexander for clarification that a deal hasn’t been struck with his council and the new owners of the council offices in St Leonard’s Place since being elected in May 2011 (Letters, January 23).
He still seems reluctant to comment on the other issues raised in my previous letters, namely the levels of traffic pollution from more than 40,000 “illegal” vehicles; and whether closing the bridge to “illegal” vehicles for six-and-half hours in the day constitutes a true “experiment”, when the council’s suspected aim is to close it 24/7.
Closing the bridge from 10.30am to 5pm instead of say 7am to 7pm would be a more realistic experiment and give a truer picture of traffic congestion in other areas of the city.
Why did the council decide that 10.30am to 5pm was a true experiment and will they close the bridge permanently based on those hours of closure?
It will be interesting to see if this council takes any notice of its citizens or is indeed interested in democracy.
Keith Thornton, De Grey Place, Bishopthorpe, York.