A consultation on the Traffic Regulation Orders needed to progress a scheme in Bath as a preventative anti-terrorism measure has launched today (September 23).
Bath & North East Somerset Council’s proposed city centre security scheme aims to install hostile vehicle mitigation measures as a protective method to reduce risks associated with vehicle borne threats posed by terrorists and criminals, whilst maintaining access to the city centre for residents, businesses and blue badge holders.
The proposals include vehicle access restrictions on streets defined as crowded places in and around Bath Abbey and the Roman Baths.
They were initially based on a counter-terrorism security survey on Bath city centre in September 2016 which identified the areas as being vulnerable to a potential hostile vehicle attack.
The council has continued to work alongside the counter-terrorism advisors to protect these areas, through both physical measures and training for front line staff, both from public and private sector.
Avon & Somerset Police recommended in 2020 that a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) for anti-terrorism purposes should be put in place as part of preventative measures.
To implement or enforce parking restrictions of any kind on a public road, a Traffic Regulation Order first needs to be introduced. The city centre security scheme will use a combination of TROs and Traffic Regulation Orders for anti-terrorism purposes and it is these the council is inviting residents and businesses to have their say on. The consultation runs until October 14.
There will also be drop-in sessions for people who wish to discuss the orders at the Commercial Hub at 15 New Bond St Bath on September 28, October 4 and October 12. Sign up here for the drop-in sessions.
The proposed orders have been amended from the proposals first laid out by the council after listening to feedback from residents in its previous consultation, which ran from November 2020 to January 2021. They have also been informed by an independent Accessibility Study.
Blue badge parking spaces will not be affected and once the traffic regulation orders are confirmed, the council will work with community and disability groups to further inform the final design of the scheme.
Councillor Kevin Guy, Council Leader, said:
Blue badge holders will be permitted to park on Cheap Street, Westgate Street and Upper Borough Walls on double yellow lines for a period of three hours, subject to space being available, via controlled access.
As part of the scheme additional seating would be provided along Cheap Street and Westgate Street to ensure adequate resting space. The proposed fully accessible ‘Parklets’ would be interspersed with existing street furniture as close to 50m intervals as possible.
Dropped kerbs and footway surface improvements would also be introduced to allow improved accessibility from existing city centre car parks and proposed additional Blue Badge bays.
All Blue Badge holders in B&NES and properties in the restricted area will receive letters inviting them to take part in the consultation.
Councillor Manda Rigby, cabinet member for Transport, said:
The proposed changes to the scheme, without compromising security, are:
- Cheap Street, Westgate Street, Saw Close and Upper Borough Walls: vehicle access restrictions from 10am to 6pm, with controlled access permitted for Blue Badge holders and carers, or taxis carrying Blue Badge holders as a passenger.
- York Street: extend restricted access operating hours to 10am to 10pm, to support the increased footfall which is anticipated from Terrace Walk to the new Clore Learning and World Heritage Centres.
- Extra Blue Badge and resident permit parking and loading spaces nearby, but outside of the restricted area.
Information about this consultation is available on request in other languages, audio, Braille, large print or other formats. If you don’t have internet access, you can request printed copies of the consultation and survey.