Letter: Nidd Gorge - Smart to look at alternatives

I am a daily user of the Nidd Gorge area for recreation and am extremely concerned about the proposal to put one of two possible relief roads through the Gorge and surrounding green space, so concerned in fact that I joined Nidd Gorge Community Action, and Zero Carbon Harrogate.

The scheme is being proposed as a relief road which makes no sense and is quite clearly going to allow development of the very area unique to Harrogate and Knaresborough that is one of the main draws to tourists as we discovered while doing a survey over the weekend of November 14 and 15.

There is also the scheme which North Yorkshire County Council and others are working on which will be the northern trunk road connecting North East Yorkshire to the west coast, am I right in thinking this will actually go through the Gorge?

It seems to me that the Relief road and the Northern Trunk Road are one and the same thing and that that is not being publicised as it would cause absolute uproar. I would like to know the thoughts of others.

We have a lot of data which we collected from Nidd Gorge users during our survey and out of the 1800ish we petitioned from just one entrance to the Gorge 86 per cent were strongly opposed to any roads through the Gorge.

There is much to be considered and the smart thinking is looking into alternatives such as smart traffic lights, improved access to more frequent train/bus stops, enhanced cycle paths and car share schemes all of which would make a lasting difference to both traffic levels and pollution, noise etc,.

These avenues should be looked into first before considering any new roads which will destroy the Gorge which is Harrogate’s biggest tourist attraction.

Allan Smyth


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