New evidence has emerged this week following a request by York Conservatives for assurances emergency service vehicles will not be impacted by the controversial ‘Groves’ road closures which have blocked through traffic on Penley’s Grove Street and Lowther Street.
Conservative Group Leader Councillor Paul Doughty asked to see consultation responses from emergency services after hearing of instances of ambulances being delayed and caught out, expressing concern himself about how the effects of increased travel time and extra traffic which now has to travel via Lord Mayor’s Walk, Monkgate and Clarence Street.
Councillor Doughty said, “Both the Ambulance and Fire services raised serious concerns that could impact their ability to respond to emergency and life threatening situations requiring them to make time consuming detours.
I was shocked to read comments by our emergency services which appear to have been disregarded and mitigation measures they suggested ignored by the LibDem/Green Council. My fears were heightened when I heard barriers had been replaced with concrete when the Fire service had expressly said barriers should be moveable. We already knew many city residents opposed the trial, as did the Conservative group and now know concerns about emergency services access were well placed despite assurances from the champions of these closures.
Until the LibDem-led Council and their Green Coalition partners can make a full and frank disclosure of the risks they are prepared to take on residents behalf, I urge the Council to suspend the trial and reinstate through access immediately.”