No easy solution to traffic issues

PUBLISHED: 15:51 28 July 2006 | UPDATED: 10:45 01 June 2010

THE leader of Fenland Council says a letter from the council s director of business and infrastructure shows how difficult it will be to resolve the issue of Wisbech Market Place. Councillor Geoff Harper was responding to receipt of the letter from Gary

THE leader of Fenland Council says a letter from the council's director of business and infrastructure shows how difficult it will be to resolve the issue of Wisbech Market Place.

Councillor Geoff Harper was responding to receipt of the letter from Gary Garford, and sent to all councillors, warning members against "ill thought" proposals which could re-introduce traffic to the town centre.

Cllr Harper said the area joint committee, which includes town, district and county councillors, remains the decision making body.

"Fenland Council owns the central area of Wisbech Market Place. Gary Garford's letter underlines the complexities involved in resolving the present situation," he said.

"It's also an important reminder that if there was a simple solution it would have been sorted out a long time ago."

Cllr Harper's comments came after the Wisbech Standard revealed exclusively the contents of the letter which criticised talk of introducing pay and parking into the town centre.

Mr Garford said there were major difficulties in policing a pay and display area for just 28 vehicles, and allowing traffic through the town centre was a nonsense. Most modern town centres, he said, prospered when they were pedestrian only.

Mr Garford wrote to councillors following a meeting of Fenland Conservative councillors in Wisbech, chaired by Cllr Harper, which raised again the issue of pay and display, and the possibility of opening up the town centre to through traffic.

Councillor Simon King, chairman of Fenland's overview and scrutiny panel, said: "Lack of enforcement is one of the major causes of the current problems as the police no longer employ traffic wardens."

He added: "Any future arrangement must be clear, enforceable and feasible.

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