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Helston car ban debate rumbles on as 'serious damage' to trade feared
12:30pm Friday 28th February 2014 in News
The debate about pedestrianising Helston’s Meneage Street rumbles on this week, with a mixed reaction to the suggestion.
Although this is just one of the ideas that has been raised as part of a public consultation into the spending of £250,000 on the town centre, it has been brought to the fore by a petition set up by shopkeepers in the street.
It has sparked plenty of reaction, Martin Matthews, a Freeman of the town, contacted the Packet to say: “If pedestrianisation took place it would be the demise of the street. I’m sure all the shopkeepers, or nine out of ten, would be against any thoughts of pedestrianisation.
“I believe the people who don’t want to sign the petition are just on holiday or probably haven’t been living here long enough.”
It is not just residents of Helston who have been affected by the issue, with Cynthia Shrubb from The Lizard calling to say: “It makes me mad. Helston is bad enough for people in wheelchairs [already]. I’ve read the comments and one bright spark says about car parks in Helston – have they ever tried to push a person in a wheelchair from any of the car parks to Meneage Street? It’s bloody awful.”
The topic has also attracted much interest on the Packet website thepacket.co.uk.
Among the 50 comments on the article is one from a reader calling himself Bobbster, who wrote: “Didn’t trade actually increase when the road was closed for roadworks a while ago?
“I am sure there are many arguments for and against this idea.
“I personally think it would be good for Helston, but it certainly needs to be looked at carefully before making such a decision. Let’s face it Helston needs change, saying no to every idea does not help.”
However, Ron Edgcumbe wrote: “I think continuing to discuss this disastrous proposal adds to its legitimacy. Hopefully it will soon be swept under the carpet before any serious damage is caused.”
A group called “Pedestrianising Helston” has been set up on Facebook, which as of yesterday 122 people have joined.
On it there are various discussion posts, which has led to reactions from people like Jane Osborne who wrote: “Until Helston as a whole has more things to offer the idea of pedestrianising is a waste of time and money. Let's encourage more things in the Guildhall – craft and arts fairs; inject some cash into this to get youngsters interested.”
Michelle Perry wrote: “We can’t beat the supermarkets, so we need to provide something different – something that they can’t.
“Personally, I think that the idea to pedestrianise Meneage street is a brilliant one – and one that has been suggested for years. Attractive to people with children who use the cafés, coffee shops, tea rooms with outside eating, where children can play freely with their friends whilst others relax.
“Making something of the street so that it has seating areas and planting will instantly make it more attractive to meet and shop.
“The longer people sit, the more likely they are to notice the shops and have a nose about.”
Continue the debate by having your say online at thepacket.co.uk.