Liberal Democrat councillors on Beverley Town Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council have given their support for plans to pilot a part-pedestrianisation scheme in Beverley’s Saturday Market.
The majority of businesses surveyed are overwhelmingly behind the scheme, which will see an extension to the pavement area from the Grapes to the Yorkshire Bank, taking in the Kings Head and businesses on the east of Saturday Market as well as Browns.
Cllr Linda Johnson stated:
“The challenge of Covid-19 and the need for staying safe by social distancing along with hand-washing and track-and-trace is huge. This scheme will allow for easier social distancing in Saturday Market, which is vital. It will also allow more pavement seating outside of the Kings Head and Cafe Nero, which will help to develop Beverley’s emerging cafe culture.
"It also releases space for more cycle parking; since Covid-19 cycling has become much more popular and cycle-parking is at a premium now in the town centre, so more cycle parking, alongside more walking space, would be most welcome."
Cllr David Boynton exclaimed:
“The great thing about this scheme is that it includes more ‘Blue Badge’ parking spaces than we currently have, which will encourage so many of our more elderly citizens who have been shielding to be able to enjoy Beverley Town centre once again.”
Beverley Town Mayor, Cllr Tom Astell expressed:
“Post-Covid, it’s vital that we respond to requests to make Beverley more pedestrian-friendly as people spend more time outside in the open air. This scheme also lends itself to making Ladygate a pedestrian-only thoroughfare, except for emergency vehicles and deliveries.
"The great thing is that this is a pilot, so it can be amended or even extended should it be successful. It just shows how progressive the town can be!”
Councillor Denis Healy, Beverley St Mary's ward Councillor and Leader of the ruling Liberal Democrat group on Beverley Town Council said:
"We fully support this pilot scheme to improve life for pedestrians in Saturday market. It improves the environment, and it helps people keep their social distance. But it also shows how important it is that Beverley gets its Park & Ride sooner rather than later. Fewer parking spaces in the town centre will encourage people to park in residential areas and add to an already difficult out of town parking problem.
"Only a few weeks ago, the Conservatives blocked Lib Dem proposals to start building the park & ride immediately. It's unrealistic to displace cars from the town centre without having somewhere to put them. So we are 100% in support of the latest proposals for the Town Centre, but the Tories shortsightedness in denying the park & ride is a huge blow for the residents who live outside the town centre.
"We will keep up the pressure for a cleaner, greener town centre, and that can only fully happen when we get the park and ride."