Until recently, Bridge Street and Bridge Place have been pedestrianised areas, with the exception of special access for some, such as Blue Badge holders.
Under a new six-month pilot, in response to complaints by traders and shoppers, Notts County Council has widened these restrictions in a bid to take action against motorists who have been exploiting the rules and parking illegally.
Now, no vehicle is permitted to enter the pedestrianised area at all, except for loading vehicles between the hours of 4pm to 10am and emergency services. Access to off-street parking is permitted, as well as those market traders whose vehicles are their stalls.
The order also bans vehicles more than 36ft long from entering the area between Ryton Street and the Priory Centre car park.
While shopping is not my number one past time, I have been informed by many a shopaholic that they can get into ‘the zone’ when let loose on the shops. The last thing they want to worry about is road safety in an area that is designated for pedestrians.
Illegal intrusions from vehicles has to stop, and while these new restrictions are not ideal, pedestrians and vehicles do not mix well and public safety is our priority.
Driving through or parking in the pedestrianised area, is contravening the law and those doing so will be dealt with by way of a fine, or, in more significant instances, criminal proceedings.
There are plenty of parking spaces available in the surrounding area. A short walk in exchange for hitting and injuring a pedestrian in your car is an easy trade.
I appreciate the effect this restriction may have on those with limited mobility and disabilities and I am aware the local authorities will be looking into this.
The effectiveness of the order will be monitored. After this time, depending upon feedback, the order will either be enforced or revoked.