Closure of service road and parking bays as shops prepare to re-open

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As reported on wilmslow.co.uk last week, Cheshire East Council is introducing a range of measures in sixteen towns and larger villages across the being ahead of the re-opening of high streets.

The temporary measures, which will be in place by Monday 15th June, have been designed to protecting people and support local businesses during the coronavirus pandemic.

The temporary measures to be installed in Wilmslow town centre are:

● Two signs to raise awareness of the need to social distance;

● The temporary closure of the service road at the top of Green Lane, where it is felt extra space is needed for pedestrians

● The suspension of parking spaces on Grove Avenue, from the junction with Grove Way to the junction with Grove Street, to provide extra space to help pedestrians respect social distancing rules.

The Council says the measures will be under constant review, once implemented, and may be further tailored to meet local circumstances. They are in response to the government's approach to reopen the high streets, as part of the Covid-19 recovery phase.

Councillor Laura Crane, Cheshire East cabinet member for highways, said: "As we begin to move beyond lockdown, we must consider how best to open up our high streets. Our priority here is to protect people and our local businesses.

"Alongside any measures, we will be supporting businesses with additional information and guidance, while encouraging high street users to adhere to the government's social distancing restrictions

"The government is providing funding to local authorities and has issued guidance on how we can help people maintain safe social distancing in busy public areas, which we are following.

"Some of our measures support walking and cycling in our town centres – which many people have enjoyed much more of during the lockdown – and this also is good for our environment and people's health and wellbeing. Further temporary and experimental measures are being considered to support walking and cycling and will be implemented once we have put in the arrangements for our high streets.

"Each of the 16 high streets identified in Cheshire East has been considered individually and measures tailored to local circumstances. Local ward members and town and parish councils have been asked for input into the plans and, where this has been received, we have taken close account of these suggestions.

"While these temporary arrangements may disrupt the travel patterns of some residents and visitors, they are necessary to protect everyone, especially those who will be using the shops when the government allows them to open – which at this point is intended to be 15 June.

"We are being careful to implement the government's measures alongside avoiding unnecessary disruption. The works completed by 15 June are an important first step and these measures will be closely monitored and adjusted as necessary."

The council says in the next stage, it will seek to deliver measures outside of town centres, and to improve the network for pedestrians and cyclists.

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Comments

Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Howard Piltz
Monday 8th June 2020 at 8:50 am
This appears to be a serious reduction of disabled parking bays ! Thank you.
Jonathan Follows
Monday 8th June 2020 at 6:52 pm
My completely unscientific study from walking around Wilmslow today is that the vast majority of people are already fully aware of the need for "social distancing" and presumably the small minority that wasn't demonstrating it were aware anyway, so I'm not sure what the signs will accomplish apart from clutter up the pavements even more. But I guess the council is damned if it does something like this, and would be damned if it didn't. The service road closure is a place where some car drivers behave inconsiderately to pedestrians during "normal" times so, as a pedestrian, it makes sense to me.
Roger Bagguley
Wednesday 10th June 2020 at 6:23 am
Howard: and further reducing the chance for Blue Pass people getting a haircut!
Clive Cooksey
Wednesday 10th June 2020 at 3:53 pm
Eh-UP! Somebody has released the "Blue Sky Thinkers" from the Funny Farm again. What half wit thought it a great idea to close disabled parking bays. This Council is riddled with so called "experts" who have not a clue. And we pay them a load of money for this. A five year old could have done better.
Paul Maddock
Wednesday 10th June 2020 at 4:22 pm
With the reduction of disabled parking spaces being a 'temporary' measure and with religious services currently being restricted, has anyone from the council thought to make any requests of St. Theresa Catholic church allowing temporary use of their car park, which should be underutilised at the moment, to be opened up for use by Disabled drivers in a charitable gesture. After all, charity is one of the foundations of the christian faith.
When restrictions are removed all round, then things can go back to normal for both parties. Would anyone be amenable to taking up my suggestion?
Bill Bennett
Wednesday 10th June 2020 at 6:06 pm
I don’t see a need to close parking bays at all. Cars drivers are at least two metres away from the driver in the next car. We are not stupid, we have managed to drive and park cars in the last three months, while observing social distancing. We have not suddenly became inept, because some shops are opening.

Closing parking bays, particularly, disabled bays is idiotic at best and will not help the people who use the bays, nor will it help shops to get customers in, if they cannot park. We will just drive to somewhere we can park.
Bernard Mitchell
Thursday 11th June 2020 at 9:05 pm
Lock down and now locked out !!!!!

So the lunatics have finally take over the asylum

Closing the only two disabled parking sites that serve the center of Grove St

The Main Street affected is forty feet wide has only a betting shop in it and is only used by the local residents to access Grve Street and of course the rather selfish people who are lucky enough not to be disabled and post on this site their pleasure at being able to patrol the area as some kind of vigilantly .One day you too may be disabled ,I wonder what you will say then

The second site as we all know is a road !!!!!!
The parking bays are head on to the main highway and have plenty of space between them an the pavement which in the past was over run by the cafes ,
By the way if the councils action was to in fact help enforce social distancing they would have to close the bottle neck that is Grove arcade !!!!

What will the disabled drivers do ,they may park close by on the double yellow lines ( quite legal ) and cause more problems !!
David Smith
Saturday 27th June 2020 at 8:36 am
Agree - more Muppetry from the Muppets in charge, If parking spaces are deemed as being too close it isn't a problem as they will not all arrive/depart at the same time and so give enough space for any human occupants to keep isolated. Was this decision implemented on the basis that cars must be separated by 2 metres? Can someone tell the Muppet that made this decision that cars are not deemed to be carrying the virus - as far as I am aware.

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