CONCERNS have been raised over the impact of the current roadworks in Norton.

Northern Gas Networks (NGN) is replacing old metal pipework in Church Street in a £150,000 upgrade to the gas distribution network.

Phase one of the work, which began on September 9, involves the closure of Church Street one-way for five weeks. Phase two will begin on Monday, October 14, with two-way rolling traffic lights in Commercial Street, from the junction of Wold Street to the junction of Wallgates Lane. This will be in place for five weeks.

Di Keal, district and town councillor for Norton West, said she had been contacted by a number of residents concerned about the works.

She said: “Businesses on Church Street are really struggling as they have no access for deliveries. This is particularly a problem for the wholesale bakery where the owner has no access for deliveries of materials, or to load up vehicles for distribution.

“With regard to the diversion and the parking suspension on St Nicholas Street, traffic is moving far faster than when motorists had to negotiate the parked vehicles, which is actually making the road much more hazardous for pedestrians and cyclists, especially due to the number of HGVs and buses that are being diverted on this route. An alternative would be to divert HGVs and buses via the A64.

“The work is predicted to go on into November and this current arrangement is resulting in major problems for the community.”

Richard Marr, NYCC highways area manager, said: “We are working with Northern Gas Networks to minimise disruption during this work, but we realise that some people have been inconvenienced.

“They have closed the eastbound carriageway on Church Street because of the location of the gas main, but have avoided a full closure.

“A westbound closure from Commercial Street to the level crossing was not possible because of the location of the pipe. We will liaise with Northern Gas Networks to address any access problems experienced by businesses.

“St Nicholas Street is not on the signed diversion for this work. This is via the A64 and drivers must take responsibility for following the signed diversion.

“Commercial bus services operated by Yorkshire Coastliner are using St Nicholas Street for eastbound journeys, as the alternative via the A64 would isolate many passengers needing to make essential journeys, including travelling to work.”

Richard White, Business Operations Lead for Northern Gas Networks, said: “The North of England’s gas distributor, Northern Gas Networks (NGN) is investing £150,000 to upgrade the gas distribution network in Norton. This involves replacing ageing metal pipework with more durable plastic equivalents, which will ensure the continued safe and reliable supply of gas for many years to come.


“A diversion on to the A64 around the area affected by the works is already in place and is clearly signposted. NGN is not diverting traffic on to St Nicholas Street. Some drivers are choosing to use this street instead, and NGN is advising drivers to use the signposted diversion route to avoid traffic building up on St Nicholas Street.


“NGN and North Yorkshire County Council have worked closely to agree the traffic management arrangements for the works, and to minimise any disruption. A joint decision was made for traffic to flow along Church Street up to, rather than away from, County Bridge; otherwise stationary traffic on Church Street could reach the railway crossing, which is not a safe or appropriate option.


“NGN continues to work with the council and businesses on Church Street so that there is access for deliveries and we liaise with businesses to give them notice if access is going to be a temporary issue. Deliveries for most businesses on Church Street are continuing as usual.


“We’d like to apologise for any inconvenience customers may encounter. The works are currently two weeks ahead of schedule, and NGN is hoping to lift the temporary lane closure on Church Street early next week.


“If anyone wants more information about the works in Norton, they can contact the NGN Customer Care Team on 0800 040 7766 or email