Sunday, July 05, 2009

Top Award for Partnership and Strategic Working in Howdenshire

Pictured with Rita Lawson (Economic Development Manager North Yorks Council)
and Leigh Johnson (Howdenshire Forward's renaissance co-ordinator)

At the Yorkshire and Humber Market Town Awards held in Thirsk this week, Howdenshire Forward’s Wallingfen Way (B1230) Working Group won the top award in the ‘Partnership and Strategic Working’ category.

This is a visionary project aimed at removing a scar on the landscape the road represents and replacing it with a distinct rural community corridor. The aim is to create community/village boundary delineation and focal points (possibly iconic, gateways), and to improve the visual appearance of the environs of the road by creating a ‘soft’ pathway for movement between villages; e.g. continuous footpaths, cycleways and bridleways by narrowing the road between Newport and Gilberdyke, and through to North Cave.

To also include de-cluttering of both signage and paint and encouraging residents and landowners to participate in the visual enhancement of their properties and boundaries in an environmentally friendly way e.g. by tree planting to help create a ‘sense’ of village community and identity by enabling ‘Shared Spaces’

The local parishes of Gilberdyke, North Cave and Newport worked together, along with many other individuals and groups, including the Goole and Howdenshire Local Action Team, which played a leading role, and students from both Hull and Leeds Metropolitan universities, to support Howdenshire Forward.

Funding was obtained from Yorkshire Forward to carry out a feasibility study and produce a 25-year plan for the B1230.

The judges commented: “A project that is trying to solve a 'real' community issue. Involving three separate communities the project shows that people can work together with one ultimate aim. Innovative and transferable, the next challenge will be to raise sufficient funds to make the vision a reality”

I am proud to be a member of working group as well as Chair of Goole and Howdenshire Local Action Team, and I feel the partnership approach brought the best out of everyone’s talents and knowledge and we have worked across boundaries to promote a long-term plan that reflects the community’s aspirations.

I would like to recognise in particular Dr Gordon Shields for championing and taking the lead on the project, Tania Pells the Goole and Howdenshire LAT officer, Leigh Johnson Howdenshire Forward's Renaissance co-ordinator, and all other partners and team members whose efforts have ensured we have succeeded so far.

Hugh Roberts, Chairman of Howdenshire Forward, said: "I’m absolutely delighted that the innovative approach taken on the Wallingfen Way Project has been regionally recognised for its excellence in strategic partnership working. The commitment shown by all members of the working group, including all three parishes, Goole and Howdenshire Local Action Team, and Leeds Metropolitan University has proved to be a true winner for Howdenshire."

For more information on Howdenshire Forward’s activities, please visit the website: or contact Renaissance co-ordinator Leigh Johnson on (01482) 391689, email

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