What happened at crucial Nidd Gorge 'relief road' meeting?

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Councillors have voted down any traffic relief measures in Harrogate which contain a new relief road in Bilton.

Emotions ran high in the packed crowd as the Harrogate Area Committee of North Yorkshire County Council debated whether to put two transport 'packages' to public consultation.

Some of the members of the public against a relief road gathering before the North Yorkshire County Council meeting. (Picture by Hollie Bone)

Some of the members of the public against a relief road gathering before the North Yorkshire County Council meeting. (Picture by Hollie Bone)

There were interruptions, barrackings and warnings about the public's behaviour from the chair as officers received a hostile reception from 100 members of the public, 12 of whom were permitted to make well-researched and, occasionally, passionate presentations of their views.

An amendment was proposed by Harrogate Borough Council leader Coun Richard Cooper, against package E, which contained plans for a new relief road through Bilton and Nidd Gorge as well as a bypass at Killinghall.

The meeting voted, to wild cheers in favour, of only pushing option B - a package of 22 sustainable measures to relieve traffic congestion.

Readers should note, the final decision on which 'package' will be put to public consultation, if any, will be decided shortly by David Bowe, NYCC's corporate director for business and environmental services, in consultation with Coun Don McKenzie, NYCC executive member for highways and elected member for Saltergate Harrogate Division.

Bilton and Nidd Gorge are not 100% out of the woods yet.

The junction of Otley Road and Cold Bath Road. Photo: Google.

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