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North Yorkshire Council gets £30m funding to improve transport links

North Yorkshire Council gets £30m funding to improve transport links

Published by Local Democracy Reporter Stuart Minting at 4:20pm 20th May 2020.

More than  £30m of government funding will be spent on improving travel connections in North Yorkshire.   

  • North Yorkshire County Council is getting more than  £30m of government funding to spend on transport.  
  • It will pay for improved commuting links into Leeds and Bradford, and for improvements to Skipton train station.  
  • Local councils will also contribute some cash themselves.  

A meeting of North Yorkshire County Council’s executive heard it had participated in a successful Leeds City Region bid which had been granted £317m.

The funding, to which the county council will add a further £300,000, will see long-held ambitions to transform gateways to and from North Yorkshire, and in particular the areas around stations.

The funding will also be poured into improving facilities and routes for walking and cycling, access to education and employment sites and bus routes to make it easier for North Yorkshire residents to commute to cities such as Leeds and Bradford.

The £5.8m to be spent in Skipton will include improved bus access to the railway station, while the £7.8m being invested in Harrogate will see a number of changes to public areas in the town centre.

Cycling - RADAR

One of the Department for Transport’s stipulations for the funding, for which the county council is the accountable authority, is that the delivering authorities, Craven and Selby district councils and Harrogate Borough Council, must spent it before April 2023.

Craven and Selby councils will contribute £100,000 and £1.8m to the scheme, respectively, but the meeting heard Harrogate council’s contribution remained unclear.

An officers’ report to the meeting warned it was generally accepted that funds awarded by the Department for Transport were finite, and that no additional funding would be awarded in the event that a project overspends, or slips.

It stated:

“Should schemes overspend, or slip, resulting in overspend, it will therefore be incumbent on the delivering authority, to manage this appropriately.

“As a consequence of this, it should be recognised that any risk in overspend is likely to be borne by either the county council, or through the funding agreements with the county council the district and borough councils, dependant on who is the lead authority for the scheme.”

Referring to the funding, the authority’s executive member for access, Councillor Don Mackenzie said: “All this is very good news for our local residents, but also for visitors and the whole of the local economy for which better travel options and facilities are so vital.”