As the towns and cities across the UK gradually re-opened after the first lockdown in 2020, temporary measures to widen pavements, remove traffic from roads and improve cycling, were introduced in parts of B&NES using Emergency Traffic Regulation Orders (ETROs).

The measures are in response to a government directive and were implemented using the Department for Transport's Emergency Active Travel Fund, which was to be used for temporary highway schemes to aid social distancing and place an emphasis on active travel by reallocating road space to enable more journeys to be taken by walking and cycling. 

These ETRO's can only remain in place as long as social distancing measures are required by government. As part of the roadmap to reopening announced in February 2021 it is anticipated that after 21st June 2021 these social distancing measures will no longer apply. The Council is currently exploring which measures are desirable to retain and consultation on area specific proposals will follow. In the longer-term schemes such as these can contribute to our goals of cleaner air and addressing the climate emergency.

Bath City

Action has been taken to temporarily widen pavements in Camden Road, St Saviours Road, Manvers Street, Monmouth Place, Monmouth Street, Moorland Road, North Parade, Queen Square, Somerset Street, Terrace Walk, Walcot Street, Westgate Buildings and Weston High Street. Temporary barriers have been placed along the roads to separate the pedestrian area from traffic. Tarmac ramps are provided to ensure that people using pushchairs and wheelchairs will be able to get to and from the shops. In some locations, to create the space, the use of parking bays has been suspended as has the Taxi rank in Westgate Buildings. We have provided a number of temporary on-street disabled parking bays and loading bays outside of the roads which are affected by the vehicle access restrictions.

In addition to the pavement widening above, the Council has also temporarily closed a number of streets within Bath City Centre where there is insufficient space to accommodate social distancing, while allowing people to queue outside shops and the safe passage of traffic.

Vehicle access restrictions are in place in Cheap Street, Westgate Street, Upper Borough Walls, Kingsmead Square and York Street. The hours of operation for these restrictions is between 10am and 6pm*, this is the same as other pedestrianised areas already in place within the city centre, and access will be strictly limited to a small number of essential needs only.

*From 5 October, the restrictions for York Street and Kingsmead Square are 10am to 10pm.

More information, including a map of the various measures can be found in this leaflet. If you need to gain access and your purpose meets the required criteria, please complete the appropriate application form from the documents list on the right of this page.

Read our Questions & Answers about pavement widening and access.

Keynsham High Street

From Monday 13 July, the council temporarily closed the one way section of Keynsham High Street to motor vehicles. The Town Council is in support of this measure. Following discussions with residents and businesses, from Friday 23 October these timings have been amended to 10am to 4pm (read more in our press release). Barriers are in place to prevent vehicle access. Two disabled bays have been created by the HSBC bank to mitigate the spaces unavailable to blue badge holders. Exemptions to the closure will be limited to emergency services and emergency utility works as well as a very limited number of other operations. The restrictions are removed between the hours of 4pm and 10am. More information can be found in our leaflet. If you have a valid reason to request an exemption, please submit the appropriate application form.

Have your say

Residents can now feedback on their experience with any of the above the changes at the Space To Move website. The survey has been created by Sustrans to help local authorities across the country evaluate the effectiveness of changes made during lockdown. 

How to contribute to future plans

Residents can also help us by identifying locations across Bath and North East Somerset where we can create more space for walking and cycling using our new map-based online Liveable Neighbourhoods consultation tool. Over 2500 people have made suggestions via the site so far. The financial impact of the pandemic has been severe, so using our limited budgets and resources well is critical; the information gained directly from residents will help to focus our efforts in the right places. 

Users of the Living Neighbourhoods consultation site can register for news updates regarding introduction of measures as and when they occur. This page will also be updated during the Covid 19 crisis period to reflect any changes in Government guidance.

If you are unable to walk or cycle and must use public transport, the Government has published advice on measures that you can take to protect yourself and others. Public transport operators are also implementing various means to support social distancing while travelling, First Bus are publishing regular updates in their news room.

Page last updated Wednesday 17 March 2021.

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