Views sought as resort prepares to extend town centre shopping street closure
PUBLISHED: 12:29 17 July 2020 | UPDATED: 12:29 17 July 2020
Community leaders says there has been a favourable response to far to the measure, which has been brought in to ensure social distancing, help with queuing outside stores – and across the street – and make the area safer.
Barriers are being put in place every day from 10am to 4pm between Boots and Bank Corner in Hamilton Road, the main shared space area.
Mayor of Felixstowe, Mark Jepson said the aim was to review the closure on a regular basis to analyse progress and the changing situation and to look at any specific issues.
The only people allowed to park in the shared space prior to the closure were blue badge holders and while there is parking for them on Cobbold Road opposite Abbeygate Lighting, next to The Triangle and other locations around the town centre, there has been concern for some disabled people who have extremely limited walking ability.
MORE: Felixstowe main town centre street closed to traffic
Felixstowe Forward change director Helen Greengrass said the majority of businesses were “very pleased” with the way the temporary closure was working and many people had said how much safer they feel.
The situation would be reviewed on July 24 and a survey is currently taking place to gain people’s views. The survey asks about the current situation and whether it should continue for 18 months - but also at whether people feel full pedestrianisation would be good for the town centre.
Town councillor Margaret Morris said: “It’s been so lovely to see many people so relaxed and clearly enjoying it. I have though heard concerns about people with hearing and vision impairments and they are a bit worried.”
Former mayor Doreen Savage said several people had spoken to her favourably about the closure and felt the public “really appreciated” it.
Councillor Steve Gallant said businesses – particularly cafes and restaurants – were being encouraged to spread out onto the pavements and street and charges for licences had been waived.
Markings on pavements and signage to help with social distancing and queuing is now being put in place.
Deliveries to shops without rear access have to be made before 10am or after 4pm. There is access for emergency vehicles.