Agenda and minutes

Harrogate and Knaresborough Area Constituency Committee - Thursday, 24th November, 2022 10.00 am

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Centre, St Luke's Ave, Harrogate, HG1 2AE. Also available to view at

Contact: Ruth Gladstone  Email:


No. Item


Minutes of the meeting held on 12 October 2022 and the special meeting held on 10 November 2022 pdf icon PDF 3 MB

Purpose:  To decide whether these Minutes can be confirmed and signed by the Chair as correct records.

Additional documents:


County Councillor Arnold Warneken referred to the last bullet point on page 3 of the minutes of the special meeting held on 10 November 2022 and advised that it correctly recorded the undertaking, which Andrew Jones MP had given during that meeting, to provide a written response to a question which County Councillor Arnold Warneken had asked during that meeting.  County Councillor Arnold Warneken reported that Andrew Jones MP had written to him but had not answered the question on the grounds that County Councillor Arnold Warneken was not one of his constituents.  County Councillor Arnold Warneken highlighted that he represented Marton cum Grafton, Great Ouseburn, Little Ouseburn and the Dunsforths on the County Council and a large farming community within the Harrogate and Knaresborough constituency.  He also highlighted that he was a member of this Committee and that the question which he had asked at the Committee’s special meeting on 10 November was on behalf of this Committee rather than himself.  The Chair agreed, at County Councillor Arnold Warneken’s request, to ask Andrew Jones MP to provide a written reply to the question which County Councillor Arnold Warneken had asked at the Committee’s special meeting on 10 November to which Andrew Jones MP had undertaken, at that meeting, to provide a written response.


Resolved –


(a)   That the Minutes of the meeting held on 12 October 2022, having been printed and circulated, be taken as read and be confirmed and signed by the Chair as a correct record.


(b)   That the Minutes of the special meeting held on 10 November 2022, having been printed and circulated, be taken as read and be confirmed and signed by the Chair as a correct record.


Declarations of Interest


County Councillor Philip Broadbank referred to item 7 on the agenda and declared that his wife was employed as a nurse at the Harrogate District Hospital.


Public Questions or Statements

Anyone who would like to ask a question or make a statement at the meeting should email notice of their wish to do so, including the full text of what they intend to say, to as soon as possible, and by midday on Monday 21 November 2022 at the latest.  Speakers are each asked not to exceed 3 minutes’ speaking time and to read out only the statement/question of which they have submitted notice, without adding to or altering it.  No person may submit more than one question or statement.  No more than one question may be asked, or statement made, on behalf of one organisation.  The overall time available for public questions or statements is 30 minutes.


If you are asking a question or making a statement at this meeting but do not wish to be recorded, please inform the Chairman who will instruct those taking a recording to cease whilst you speak.


Two notices had been received of questions or statements from members of the public for this meeting. 


Neil Hind, Chairperson, Pinewoods Conservation Group


Ruth Gladstone (Principal Democratic Services Officer) read out the following question on behalf of Neil Hind:-  “Councillors are hopefully aware of the plans for Harrogate Spring Water to expand onto public woodland known as Rotary Wood as there is public concern around this.  As from 1st April, that land will transfer ownership from Harrogate Council to the new North Yorkshire Council.  Could the Committee confirm that it would not approve or support any proposal for the Council to sell or lease this public land for development.”


Ruth Gladstone read out the following response on behalf of officers from the Council’s Business and Environmental Services Directorate:- “Harrogate Spring Water has been investigating the possibility of expansion at the site for a number of years.  The company is a local business and employer, now part of Danone.  Expansion of the site would initially need to be considered in the same way as any development.  Therefore, if the company can obtain the appropriate statutory consents, including planning permission, then the Council will need to consider whether it wishes to allow use of the land and the terms for any transaction.”


Members made no comment regarding the above question and response so that Members who would be determining the planning application did not need to leave this meeting to avoid any suggestion of predetermining that application.


20mph Pannal Ash Safe Streets Zone


Dr Jenny Marks made the following statement on behalf of herself and Mrs Ruth Lily:-


“Thank you Chair and Councillors for giving us the opportunity to deliver our statement.  I am Jenny Marks and this is my neighbour on Pannal Ash Road, Ruth Lily.


We are applying to NYCC for the creation of a 20mph zone, with appropriate additional infrastructure, including safe crossings, around Harrogate Grammar School, Rossett High, Ashville College, Rossett Acre Primary, and Western Primary.


The County Council’s Revised 20mph Speed Limit and Zone Policy (Jan 2022) allows for the creation of 20mph zones particularly around schools, where they benefit both safety and a sense of place, to extend an existing 20mph limit, and where there is public support for the proposal.


We can demonstrate a need for a 20mph zone on the basis of all these points.


We are speaking from a position of significant collective concern for the safety of the 4,995 school children, and for all those who use the network of roads around the schools on a daily basis, including residents, and users of Rossett and Ashville Sports Centres, Busy Bees Nursery, and Rossett Nature Reserve.


We are speaking from a strong position of local knowledge and support, having spent the last 18 months consulting schools, local residents and other stakeholders in order to better understand their needs.


Our consultation has enabled us to formulate a plan for the area which takes into account all of those needs – a 20mph zone  ...  view the full minutes text for item 27.


Schools, Educational Achievement and Finance pdf icon PDF 564 KB

Report of the Corporate Director – Children and Young People’s Service.


Purpose of the report:  To inform Members of the local educational landscape, educational achievement and the financial challenges which affect schools in the Harrogate and Knaresborough constituency area.


Considered:  The report of the Corporate Director – Children and Young People’s Service which provided information on:-


·       The numbers of maintained and academy schools across North Yorkshire and within the Harrogate and Knaresborough constituency.

·       School standards, ie: Ofsted judgements; the uneven impact of the pandemic on 2021/22 performance data; overall attainment; attainment at the early years foundation stage and at key stages 2 and 4; and the number of young people not in education, employment or training.

·       The numbers of suspension incidents and permanent exclusions.

·       The reshaping of targeted mainstream SEN provision in the constituency during the 2020/21 academic year.

·       SEN statistics for the constituency area.

·       Elective home education.

·       School finances, ie: 2021/22 school revenue balances; school budget projections based on 2022/23 start budgets; school finance and funding issues; local authority support for schools in financial difficulty; and the financial position of schools in the constituency area.

·       The planning of school places, ie: current and future pupil rolls; provision for primary stage in the Boroughbridge, Harrogate West, Harrogate Outer, and Knaresborough town areas; provision for secondary stage; and provision for the new settlement at Maltkiln.


The report was introduced by Sue Turley (Strategic Planning Officer) who, together with Sally Dunn (Head of Schools High Needs Early Years), Jane le Sage (Assistant Director Inclusion), Amanda Newbold (Assistant Director Education and Skills), and Howard Emmett (Assistant Director Strategic Resources), responded to Members’ questions.


Members thanked the officers for providing a thorough and excellent report and asked questions.  Additional information provided in response to questions included the following:-


·       A survey was being undertaken to gather information on actions which schools were taking to address the impact of increasing electricity and gas prices.  Once the survey results were available, they would be shared with Committee Members.


·       Regarding school performance, the results for the Harrogate and Knaresborough constituency area were above averages across the county, and sometimes nationally.  Members expressed concern that some performance across the county was below the national average.  Officers advised of the actions which the local authority was taking to improve performance of local authority schools and could take regarding Academies.


·       Further information was provided about the detailed work undertaken to plan school places to ensure capacity for new and future housing developments.  Members commented that: -

(i)             they would prefer a secondary school to be provided straight away to serve the proposed Maltkiln development and reduce home to school travel by car or bus.  The officers advised that land within the Maltkiln development was safeguarded for secondary provision, should it be required in the future.  However, Boroughbridge High School was being expanded and would have sufficient capacity to serve the Maltkiln community; and

(ii)            having all secondary schools, and no sixth form, on one side of Harrogate was increasing traffic congestion.  Members suggested that a secondary school was needed in the Bilton/New Park area of Harrogate.  Members suggested that the local authority was at risk of making pragmatic decisions rather than considering climate change issues  ...  view the full minutes text for item 28.


Fuel Poverty Update pdf icon PDF 389 KB

Presentation on behalf of the Director of Public Health, NYCC.  Presentation slides attached.


Purpose: To provide an update, as requested by Committee Members.


Considered:  A presentation by Victoria Turner (Public Health Consultant, Public Health Team) concerning fuel poverty in North Yorkshire, its impact on health, actions being taken nationally and locally, and future opportunities which included local government reorganisation in North Yorkshire; the Levelling Up/Shared Prosperity Funding; and the co-benefits of addressing climate change.  (A copy of the presentation slides was circulated as part of the agenda papers for this meeting.)


During discussion, various issues were highlighted, including the following:-


·       Members commended the work being done to address fuel poverty.


·       Members highlighted that residents were in fuel poverty within in the relatively affluent constituency of Harrogate and Knaresborough. 


·       Victoria Turner undertook to check what specialist property support was available to insulate old buildings in conservation areas where usual uPVC windows were not permitted.


·       Officers recognised the need to highlight places where people could go to keep warm, that were already open, and where there was a lot of activity taking place in any case (eg libraries) so there should be less stigma in going there.


The Chair thanked Victoria Turner for her presentation and for answering Members’ questions.


Resolved –


That the presentation be noted.


Harrogate District Hospital's Recovery from the Covid Pandemic

Verbal briefing from Sarah Armstrong (Chair) and Jonathan Coulter (Chief Executive) of Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust


Purpose: To provide a briefing, as requested by Committee Members.


Considered:  The oral briefing by Sarah Armstrong (Chair of Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust) and Jonathan Coulter (Chief Executive of Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust) concerning Harrogate Hospital’s recovery from the Covid pandemic. 


Key themes raised during discussion with Members included the following:-


·       The Hospital’s plans to run its own Domiciliary Care Service, the risk that such plans would distort the social care market recognising that care providers were currently struggling to recruit staff, and the suggestion that the Hospital and the County Council should work together to try collectively to make the situation better.  Jonathan Coulter advised that the Hospital was very much aware of the situation, wanted to help address the problem of delayed discharges, and was working with Richard Webb’s team to work this through with the County Council rather than doing anything that would upset that.


·       Jonathan Coulter confirmed that the Hospital wished to look both at:- (i) the Buurtzorg model to provide support around the District Nurses Team; and (ii) whether North Yorkshire was suffering from nursing home deregistration due to the inability to attract nurses and, moreover, nurses moving from nursing homes to work for the NHS, and whether outreach nursing support could be given to ensure capacity in nursing beds within nursing homes.


·       Actions the Hospital had taken to improve security following incidents of aggression towards staff and volunteers.


·       A Member highlighted that the County Council’s Scrutiny of Health Committee could be of greater help if the Trust provided written, rather than oral, information at meetings of that Committee.  Jonathan Coulter undertook to deal with this.


The Chair thanked Sarah Armstrong and Jonathan Coulter for their briefing and asked for Members’ thanks to be passed on to staff at the hospital.


Resolved –


That the briefing be noted.


Youth Council Update

Verbal update by a representative of the Youth Council on issues of importance to the Youth Council


Purpose:  This verbal update is an extension of a pilot exercise commenced at Skipton and Ripon Area Constituency Committee.


Considered:  The oral briefings provided by Lulu Halloum and Luke Warburton (the leadership team from Harrogate Youth Council) and Naim Brando (member of the Youth Parliament for Harrogate and Craven).  Lulu and Luke spoke about the Youth Council, its structure, current campaign topics, and the difficulties the Youth Council faced.  Naim spoke about his role and the Youth Parliament’s current campaign topics.


Members welcomed the presentations and applauded Lulu, Luke and Naim for their work and the Youth Council’s activities.


During discussion:-


·       The Youth Council representatives invited Members of the Committee to attend Youth Council meetings.  County Councillors Paul Haslam, Philip Broadbank and Pat Marsh in particular expressed an interest in attending.


·       In response to Members’ questions, it was highlighted that finance was a key difficulty for the Youth Council and that, if the Youth Council could attract more funding, it would hire a stall at local events to carryout outreach activities.  The Committee Chair suggested that the Youth Council should contact County Councillors outside this meeting because each County Councillor had a Locality Budget to spend.


It was noted that the Youth Council’s representatives were scheduled to be invited to attend another meeting of the Committee in 2023.


The Chair thanked Lulu, Luke and Naim for attending this meeting and for providing their briefings. 


Resolved –


That the briefings be noted.


Committee Work Programme pdf icon PDF 607 KB

Report of the Principal Democratic Services Officer


Purpose of the report:  To ask Members to consider, amend and add to the Committee’s work programme.


Considered:  The Committee’s Work Programme for Members to consider and amend.


Resolved –


(a)        That the Work Programme be approved, subject to:-


(i)             The inclusion of an additional meeting to be held in/around February 2023 to consider the Harrogate Station Gateway Project and an update on Active Travel Schemes, the precise date to be identified following the receipt of further information from Highways Officers and consultation with Committee Members.


(ii)            The inclusion, at the meeting to be held on 16 March 2023, of an update from the Members’ Task and Finish Group which is looking into the possibility of seeking Designated Bathing Area status for the River Nidd at Knaresborough.


(iii)           The inclusion, at the meeting to be held on 16 March 2023, of a presentation from Harrogate Destination Management Organisation, and that Ruth Gladstone circulate, to all Members of the Committee, any information about the consideration of DMOs in the meantime by NYCC scrutiny committees.


(iv)           The inclusion, at the meeting to be held on 16 March 2023, of an item allowing Members to comment on the Harrogate Borough Council Playing Pitch Strategy, and that, in the meantime, Ruth Gladstone obtain the presentation slides used at the Borough Council’s recent Member Training regarding that Strategy and email these to all Members of the Committee.


(b)        That Ruth Gladstone obtain, and circulate to all Members of this Committee, the list of initiatives considered by Harrogate Borough Council’s 2024 Programme Board.