With summer upon us, residents and visitors in Scarborough can feel safer whilst shopping in the town centre precinct.
In 2019, a series of incidents occurred within the town centre pedestrian zone including pedestrians being involved road traffic collisions.
Following consultations with nearby businesses, general concerns were raised about motor vehicles using the precinct as a cut-through and as a car park at all times of day by members of the public.
PC Nick Patrick, the Neighbourhood Policing Team Beat Manager for the Town Centre working within the Community Impact Team in Scarborough, spearheaded a project which started with a risk assessment.
Utilising a multi-agency cooperation with Scarborough Borough Council and North Yorkshire County Council, an action plan was laid out which included an increase to signage, information to the public and further consultation with businesses.
In early 2020, a temporary change to the traffic regulation was made due to COVID-19 which changed the times of the restrictions.
This temporary change was removed earlier this year, allowing the project to continue.
PC Patrick said: “Something needed to be done to make the precinct a safer place. This is not about how many tickets can be issued, I want us to be able to educate drivers to read the signs, to prevent further injury to pedestrians or even worse.”
North Yorkshire County Council has ensured that the signage in the town centre is legal and, with assistance from Scarborough Borough Council, an advice leaflet has been produced.
PC Patrick added: “We have a leaflet which we are providing to drivers of vehicles which are being found parked or driven in the confines of the pedestrian precinct. If you are unsure where you can drive, check the traffic signs at the start of the precinct. This is where you will notice a change in the road surface.”
This isn’t a total ban, there are exceptions:
- Access is granted to goods vehicles between 4pm and 11am to load and unload
- Utility vehicles have an exemption to the regulation but must adhere to the one-way system which is in place
- Emergency services also have full right of access at any time
PC Patrick said: “Our local economy is important to us. We are working with the businesses to improve the town centre and I think everyone will agree that safety is paramount.”