Plans to remove excess signage in Bamburgh
SEASONAL parking restrictions in the popular coastal villages of Bamburgh and Newton-by-the-Sea are set to be extended to cover the whole year.
The existing ‘no waiting at any time’ restrictions are in force from May to September but Northumberland County Council believes they are outdated in such popular tourist villages.
“Bamburgh is now considered a popular place to visit all year round so the seasonal aspect of the restriction serves little or no purpose,” said county engineer Paul McKenna in a report to the planning committee on Tuesday.
“Based on limited resources, the removal of the seasonal aspect of the restriction would be the first step in a number of measures to improve the quality of life for those living and visiting Bamburgh,” he added.
The decision will result in the removal of over 50 signs within the village, in line with a Department for Transport (DfT) push for local authorities to reduce sign clutter where possible.
Mr McKenna explained: “Prior to rolling out civil parking enforcement (CPE) during April 2012 there were only a small number of signs dictating the restriction and they were largely ignored. The implementation of CPE saw a significant increase in the number of signs being introduced to bring the restriction up to legal and enforceable standards.
“Last month, the DfT published a document asking local authorities to identify, review and remove unnecessary traffic signs as a cost effective means of improving the environment.”
It has been an issue in Bamburgh for three years, at least. In 2010 the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership, with the support of the parish council and local residents, commissioned Hamilton Baillie Associates to outline proposals to enhance the streetscape quality.
A series of traffic and public realm improvements are also being considered in the future, finance permitting. This has led to concern about the increased pressure for parking next to Clarks greengrocers and Carter’s butchers.
Furthermore, the Grace Darling Museum requires space for volunteers to park and for coaches or maintenance vehicles to load and unload.
However, as a result of talks between county officers and parish councillors, it has been decided to allow parking on both sides of the Church Street to Front Street link all year round.
“This is already heavily practiced outside of the seasonal restriction,” said Mr McKenna. “The road is considered wide enough to accommodate this request and it will relieve the pressure on parking within the village.”
In Newton, 20 signs will be removed. However, a section of the narrow C72 will only have restrictions from 9am to 6pm so evening trade at the Ship Inn is not affected.
During the consultation period, residents did indicate the benefits of seasonal restrictions such as parking on the C72 in bad weather, while elderly residents noted the difficulty of walking the 300m from the main car park to nearby facilities.
Mr McKenna said: “To alleviate these concerns, the section of the C72 on the west side between Farm Road and Boatman’s Place can be made ‘no waiting every day between 9am and 6pm’. Parking would therefore be permitted on an evening when the Ship Inn needs it most. Any resident or guest overspill can also be accommodated.”
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Weather for Berwick-Upon-Tweed
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 6 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 8 mph
Wind direction: West
Temperature: 7 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 15 mph
Wind direction: South west