WITH reference to the closure of Skipton High Street on market days.

Skipton Town Council are to be congratulated on doing exactly what councils are there to do – looking after the people of the town, especially at the moment in the matter of High Street closures.

They have undertaken surveys regarding public opinion, and have tried to act on them, that’s their role as elected and unpaid representatives. Meanwhile it appears that ‘Transport officials’ at North Yorkshire County Council (Craven Herald, September 9) have decreed that the High Street must remain open. That council has undertaken no public survey, and it does not even seem to have had the matter brought up at a meeting of councillors.

Craven District Council is going, and will hardly be missed. But it should be replaced by something better – a body which is representative, and speaks with the authority of public backing – not unelected ‘officials’.

Mr Herbert states that the council has received complaints about the High Street closure, and indeed the town council did not receive 100 per cent of support – very little in life ever does – but a genuine survey, unlike anything undertaken by the county council, has shown what residents and Skipton shoppers actually want, instead NYCC is following the decision given by Mr Herbert, and as his job title states, he is a Highways Improvement Manager – nothing in that brief about looking after the wellbeing of Skipton residents and shoppers.

This decision by Mr Herbert and possibly other unnamed ‘officials’ does not bode well for the future effective takeover of the district council’s role and responsibilities, and, hard as such an act is, NYCC is actually making CDC look quite good.

However there is a solution, and one which Mr Herbert has almost proposed. He is reported as stating that “the council could revisit the matter once the major road projects are complete.” Without going into why such roadworks are going to take an incredible 18 months, the answer would appear to be simple.

Allow the council to close the High Street subject to any necessary roadworks making such a closure impractical at certain times.

That would save the matter having to be brought up again, would allow the town council to close the High Street when practical, even if it takes 18 months, but would also allow for any necessary roadworks to take precedence.

It might also allow for the High Street to be closed on different days. For example if there are no roadworks taking place on Saturdays and Sundays, then perhaps the High Street could close on those days. It might also be thought reasonable to state why these roadworks are taking so long.

Meanwhile why not contact someone who will have some influence in this matter? Your county councillor or MP would be start.

Alan Perrow