Warkworth Parish Council: Parking, potholes, poaching and more

A view of Warkworth
Picture Jane Coltman
A view of Warkworth Picture Jane Coltman

Parking in Warkworth is a major issue and needs to be tackled – one councillor has said.

Coun John Lilley told members: “One of the biggest issues in this village – and increasingly so – is the issue of parking and I don’t know how we address it.

“If we didn’t have an overflow at The Stanners, it would be impossible to get parked in the village. It is serious now and we should be thinking about possible solutions.”

Coun Stewart Elliott said he believes the only possible solution is to put a car park in the castle field.

He told the meeting: “It is the only place it could go. There is nowhere else.”

However, Chairman Coun Jeff Watson believes parking is an insolvable problem in the village.

He said that some people are put off from using the Beach Road car park because it is outside the village centre and they don’t want to walk back in.

At the meeting, councillors conceded that the Beach Road car park is also in a poor condition and agreed to fund repair work at the entrance to the facility.

Coun Watson said there is a problem with people parking on pavements and blocking paths in certain parts of the village.

He said: “Parking tickets would help. You have only got to put one or two out and it would soon stop. People should be done if they are forcing pedestrians out onto the road.”

Coun John Hobrough raised concerns about the fact that some non-disabled motorists are parking in the disabled bays in Dial Place. “It is an abuse,” he said.

• The poor state of roads through the Warkworth parish has been criticised and a call for action has been made.

Coun Stewart Elliott said: “It hasn’t been a bad winter, yet the roads in the parish are poor.”

He added that the road connecting Warkworth with Guyzance is ‘one gigantic pothole’ and asked: “Why is the county council wasting £40million on relocating County Hall? Instead of this, why not spend it on fixing roads? We will complain about the roads, but they will say that they haven’t got any money. If you can spend £40million on County Hall, how can you plead poverty?”

Coun John Lilley added: “The road through to Acklington from the top of Morwick Road is becoming dangerous.”

Concerns were also raised about the road from Warkworth Station to Shilbottle.

Coun Helen Wilson added: “They are promoting tourism, but they aren’t backing it up with things like the roads.”

Chairman Coun Jeff Watson said: “We should complain about the state of the roads in our parish, but I am sure that they will come back and say that we should put it into the Local Transport Plan.”

The parish council will write to the county council about the state of a number of roads in the parish.

The county council has defended the relocation of County Hall, saying that building a new smaller and more cost-efficient HQ will save the council money in the long-term.

• A few incidents of poaching have been reported to police, PC Dougie Donaldson told parish councillors.

He said: “We have had a few incidents of poaching at outlying farms in the area and we work with other agencies to fight this.

“If they can’t poach, they will be taking stuff off the farm, but that said, the crime rate is very good in this area and Warkworth is a good place to live.”

Concerns were also raised to police about parking in various parts of the village.

Coun Sally Black said: “Morwick Road is quite a hazard with the building site there. There is mud on the road and work vehicles are parking in the road which makes it extremely dangerous.”

Meanwhile, Coun Helen Wilson said there has been a spate of people dumping bags of dog mess around the village.

• The parish council meeting heard that there has been no response from Northumberland Estates regarding the council’s concerns about bankside erosion, following recent flooding.

Last month, Coun John Hobrough said that the bank had caved in and further land had been lost in the area between The Stanners and Bridge End House. He feared there would be more erosion to come and also raised concerns about an exposed sewerage pipe in the area.

At the time, members agreed to write to landowner Northumberland Estates, but at last week’s meeting, councillors were told that no response has been forthcoming. At last week’s meeting, members agreed to send another letter, this time addressed for the attention of the Duke.

• Warkworth’s Community Tidy-Up takes place on Saturday, March 19. Volunteers should meet at Dial Place at 10am. Litter-picking equipment will also be available from Sunday, March 20, to Friday, March 25. The tidy-up has been organised by the parish council. For information, call 07588 659600.

• The parish council has raised concerns about a planning application in the village. The scheme, a resubmission, is for a two-storey side and single-storey rear extension at Warkworth Avenue. The concern centres on the proximity of the extension to the site boundary.

• Amble’s beacon, on The Braid, will be lit on Thursday, April 21, at 7.30pm, for the Queen’s birthday celebrations.

• The next parish council meeting is on Thursday, April 7, at 6.30pm, in the British Legion Room, Memorial Hall. Members of the public welcome.