Alarm over anti-social problems at Harrogate's favourite beauty spot at Nidd Gorge
Residents are calling for action after the growth of anti-social behaviour at a cherished Harrogate beauty spot since lockdown for Covid.
Concerned members of the public alarmed by damage and detritus, dangerous overflow parking, loud music and camp fires in Harrogate's greatest nature and wildlife spot have called on the authorities to do more to protect Nidd Gorge.
A public meeting was held in the Woodland Trust car park at Nidd Gorge earlier in the week including nearby residents from Scotton Moor, a representative from The Woodland trust and Coun Zoe Metcalfe.
Those attending heard reports of illegal and dangerous overflow parking at peak times, blocking pedestrians paths and residents' driveways, cars idling, dogs barking and loud music noise at anti-social times with the behaviour of some professional dog walkers identified as part of the problem since the car park reopened after lockdown.
Nidd Gorge, which is blessed with a dramatic ravine, the River Nidd, ancient woodland and tree-covered valley sides, was the subject of a lengthy battle against a possible relief road in recent years.
Nidd Gorge Community Action's successful campaign against the idea was even supported by The Woodland Trust, the UK's largest woodland conservation charity which protects trees and woodland and restores ancient woodland.
The Woodland Trust is reported to be erecting additional advisory notices to deter anti-social behaviour at Nidd Gorge.
And Claro ward councillor Zoe Metcalfe, who is deputy mayor of Harrogate Borough Council, is taking up the residents' case on the problems at Nidd Gorge.
The Nidd Gorge area is also the subject of a new campaign at the moment to raise £300,000 to create Harrogate first community-owned woodland at Long Lands Common.
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