PLANS for six traffic humps on roads surrounding Ripon Market Place have been backed by the city council.

The humps are part of a scheme to improve Ripon Market Place, which is being funded by a £1.2m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

When North Yorkshire County Council asked Ripon City Council for its verdict on the humps, members voted in favour of them by seven votes to three with one abstention.

Part of the square will become a piazza in front of Ripon Town Hall, and will incorporate the obelisk. The rest will remain a car park.

Ripon Town Clerk Yvonne Covell said the raised platforms were intended to slow traffic, make the area more pedestrian- friendly, provide key crossing points, and help the disabled.

"Councillors were in agreement with the humps, but some believed there would be too many of them," said Mrs Covell.

Work on the project to restyle the square, where the city horn is sounded at 9pm each night in an age-old ceremony, is expected to start in February.

The proposed road humps would be located in Queen Street, near its junction with Market Place North; Market Place East, near Morrison's supermarket; Market Place East, near the Unicorn Hotel; Market Place South, outside the Town Hall; Market Place West, near Lloyds TSB Bank; and Fishergate, near its junction with Market Place North.

The structures would be in the form of speed tables, varying in width and length, with ramped approaches.