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Councillors celebrate reversal of park cut

York city council

4:58pm 1st July 2011

Hull Road Ward’s Labour councillors Neil Barnes and Fiona Fitzpatrick are today celebrating success in reversing a cut in funding to Hull Road Park.

The original cut, proposed by the previous Liberal Democrat administration, consisted of £38,000 worth of cuts to Hull Road Park – which would have resulted in less park security at night-time and the removal of flower beds and other positive aesthetics.

Local community leaders such as the Chair of Tang Hall Residents’ Association, Simon Moss, and local church leader, Father Tim Jones, had previously campaigned against the cut, which would have had a clear detrimental impact on the park and its offer to local residents.

Councillors Barnes and Fitzpatrick pushed for the inclusion of a complete cut reversal in the Labour budget amendment proposed last night by Labour Leader of the Council, Coun. James Alexander.

Coun. Barnes said:

"I’m absolutely delighted that we have been able to fulfil one of the most significant pledges of our campaign, which was to protect Hull Road Park. In an area where there are many low-income families, a free facility like this is absolutely vital to the community.

“It’s a cut that should never have been considered in the first place. Now that we can maintain nightly closures of the park for security reasons, the amenities that are used by people of all ages will continue to be part of a safe environment.”

Coun. Fitzpatrick said:

“I was really pleased to see Father Tim Jones come to the council meeting and speak on behalf of his parishioners. He was absolutely right in stating that council budget cuts usually hurt the least well off the most, and nowhere more so than in a community asset like Hull Road Park.

“Father Jones also rightly said, ‘How do you put a value on a park?’ The city’s parks are amongst the best assets we have in York and should not be endangered.”

Simon Moss, Chair of Tang Hall Residents’ Association said:

“This is brilliant news for the residents of Tang Hall. Hull Road Park has been central to our community for many years and used by people of all ages. Nightly closures and maintaining flower beds and the park environment will ensure that it continues to be one of the area’s greatest assets.”

The city’s Liberal Democrats maintained their stance of cutting the park’s funding and voted against the amended budget.

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