Wales

Coronavirus: Ceredigion 'safe zone' plan for town centres

Aberystwyth Image copyright Google
Image caption The plan is to "create more space for shoppers to walk safely" in towns with narrow streets

Vehicles could be stopped from driving into town centres in the day to create "safe zones" due to the pandemic.

Ceredigion council said some towns have narrow paths with "insufficient space for people to keep a safe distance".

It said closing roads temporarily in the day would give visitors more space and allow businesses to extend outside.

Aberystwyth mayor Charlie Kingsbury said it was a "good idea" but there were concerns businesses and residents "aren't negatively affected".

More visitors could be expected to tourist towns like Aberystwyth and New Quay, among others, with Wales' lockdown travel limits ending on Monday.

Restaurants and pubs are also able to open outdoors from 13 July.

In a statement, Ceredigion council said: "The plans being developed by council officers include closing off roads to traffic during the day to create more space for shoppers to walk safely, particularly as large numbers of tourists and students return to the county.

"It's also aimed at helping businesses too by creating more outdoor space for retailers and the hospitality sector to trade."

Mr Kingsbury said the town council had unanimously backed the idea in principle but "nothing is set in stone".

He said it was important businesses' views were considered to ensure issues like access for deliveries were addressed, along with parking, especially for people with mobility problems.

The county council said it would provide further details on its plans soon.

Only the Isles of Scilly has recorded a lower death rate than Ceredigion from coronavirus across England and Wales.

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