York Castle Area Campaign news 2006 Castle Area Campaign logo

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The massacre of Jews in 1190

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Photos of Clifford's Tower

Missing City of York Council report

Who in York is guilty?

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Petition against Coppergate II

Yorkshire celebrities' comments

Demonstration against Shoppergate


Earlier news from 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, and from 1998-2000.

25th Aug 2006 - Radio 4 covers story of York's massacre of Jews.
BBC Radio 4 re-told the massacre of York's Jewish population at Clifford's Tower in 1190 as part of a series "Rediscovering Places of Historical Importance" by Andrew Hoskin on the "Today" programme. See also our page about York's Jewish history.

2nd July 2006 - Castle Area Campaign supporter, Freddie Trueman, dies.
We mourn the loss of a superb cricketer, a great Yorkshireman, and a supporter of the campaign to stop the building of a shopping mall next to Clifford's Tower in York. Diagnosed with lung cancer in May, he died yesterday, aged 75. Freddie Trueman spoke his mind and gave his support to the Castle Area Campaign along with other famous people.

18th May 2006 - Land Securities wavering on York's Castle Piccadilly site?
Land Securities has not yet made a decision on whether it should go ahead with building a shabby shopping mall in York. Land Sec is still thinking carefully about whether it wants another good hiding from the good people. Gerald Jennings, LS regional director, said, "We hope, after very careful consideration, to be in a position to make our decision later this year."
The Castle Area Campaign, citizens of York, and our friends and supporters around the world will be watching and waiting.

12th May 2006 - "Row over York's plan to build retail site".
A piece in "Building Design" magazine notes that York Council has published a new development brief setting out its vision for Castle Piccadilly, where developer Land Securities Trillium has twice failed to secure planning consent for retail-led schemes. A critic then says "In 2003 the inspector was robust in his condemnation of the retail-led scheme... concluding that any development of such an important site must be heritage led rather than retail led. So what does the City of York Council do? It publishes a third brief, proposing development which 'addresses the retail needs of the city'."

10th May 2006 - "Why York is special".
Professor Sir Ron Cooke's book, published by York Civic Trust (ISBN 1 85072 344 3), attempts to answer the question which Sir Ron overheard in York's Guildhall. A property developer and an unusually enlightened councillor were talking...
Developer : "There's no limit to what we could do here if York didn't think it was so special!"
Councillor : "But York is special!"

Developer : "Why?"

3rd May 2006 - York's independent retailers are being "squeezed out".
Nicole Snowden, closing her fashion boutique, Bleu Marine, in Low Petergate, said, "We are getting squeezed by the big stores more and more. York is getting harder for a business. There are almost too many shops for the number of people. When they open more and more shops, some will obviously suffer."

15th Apr 2006 - Shambles shopkeepers struggling due to rising rents.
Frustrated retailers in York's historic shopping street, 'The Shambles', who lease their premises from City of York Council, say the authority is not helping them. Howard Proctor, owner of Earl Grey Tea Rooms, worries York is losing its individuality - "The council seems to have a very short term, get-the-money-in-quick plan for the city centre. If a property is vacant, it will let it to the highest bidder. It's a shame, as all the little people will go and York will become a homogenous city centre just like any other. The council has got such a valuable historic asset and it doesn't seem to value it."

23rd Mar 2006 - City of York Council passes planning brief for more shops
Well, what did you expect? Still, there were some minor victories. Councillors took four hours to argue over the detail and due to amendments from Independents, Labour and Greens there were a couple of safety clauses inserted.
a) that a clear view from the base of the Clifford's Tower mound to the River Foss must be maintained.
b) that Piccadilly, the East side, of the Foss is preferred for large retail uses.
The Castle Area Campaign Group is in no way satisfied with this planning brief. It is still calling for a big shopping mall however, the protesters and some Councillors have won a few points today. There is still much to do - so keep watching.

20th Mar 2006 - Poll shows York Council is wrong to chase chain-stores
The Yorkshire Evening Press today ran a poll asking, "Would the opening of high-class retail outlets like Harvey Nichols make you more likely to shop in York?"
The response was an emphatic "No".     ( Yes = 9.5%  No = 91.5% )
Okay, we note that the total comes to 101%. The YEP concedes a rounding error, but the point is that people are not interested in the big shopping mall idea. That's not why they come to shop in York. Will York Council ever understand this?

14th Mar 2006 - New planning brief out
Here we go again! A revised draft planning brief for Castle Piccadilly is out and will be presented to the City of York Council's Planning Committee on 23rd March 2006.

The brief contains some improvements but the Council seems to be obsessed with shoving a big shopping mall on the site as this map shows.
Castle Piccadilly revised brief (PDF 1Mb)
Castle Piccadilly proposals map (PDF 180k)

Click for details of development

26th Jan 2006 - Holocaust Memorial Day in York
York Unity organised a candlelit memorial vigil at Clifford's Tower to mark Holocaust Memorial Day. The event centred on Clifford's Tower because it was the scene of York's darkest hour when 150 Jews died at the hands of a mob in 1190.

Clifford's Tower is no place to build a shopping mall.

Holocaust Memorial Day in York


Click for earlier news from 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001, and 1998-2000.