YOUR front-page story (The Press, May 12) says that council officers have claimed that millions of pounds of government grants at York Central would be at risk if a public inquiry ruled against closing Leeman Road.

What meeting? Were local ward councillors invited? Or members of the public? I attended the public inquiry and heard the York Central Partnership make their case. At no point did they mention possible loss of grants.

I fear that this claim is all too typical of the way the Partnership, which includes City of York Council, is operating at the moment.

This is one of the largest development schemes in the country with a huge impact, not just on local residents in Leeman Road, but on the whole of the city.

Yet the Partnership meets in secret and publishes no minutes about their decisions.

Instead, their members leak one-sided accounts of events to make alarmist statements.

The decisions made at York Central will affect all of us for many years. We need to know who is making them and why.

Patrick Kelly,

East Mount Road,


.... IT is not surprising that the council's officers are panicking about the possibility of losing the Leeman Road public inquiry.

The original planning consent was bulldozed through with little regard for local residents, and the Walkway Agreement allowing them to walk through the NRM's new gallery (sprung on the inquiry by surprise) was not open for public scrutiny and seems intended to present obstacles rather than accommodate them.

Despite hundreds of York residents (not just locals) objecting to the closure last summer, the Partnership has done nothing to allay their fears, and the Secretary of State has supported their need to be heard by holding a public inquiry, despite the delays involved.

The Partnership has no alternative plan in the very real possibility of the closure being rejected, and the risk of public money being lost or wasted is squarely down to the Partnership's disinterest in the community which will be its neighbour.

Lindsay Cowle

Acomb Road, York