Traffic through the centre of Falmouth is to be restricted again from next week as part of a Government initiative to encourage cycling and walking post-Covid.

At a recent meeting of Falmouth Town Council, town centre manager Richard Gates told councillors that the closure was to start on Monday, May 10 and was due to a successful bid to the Active Travel Fund by Cornwall Council.

The Government gave Cornwall Council £607,000 towards the scheme to be shared out on a number of projects.

Falmouth Packet:

The High Street will not be included in the restrictions this year

The restrictions will replicate what happened last year during lockdown but this time will not include the closure of the High Street.

The town centre will trial pedestrian priority and improved cycle provision.

The aim is to help avoid overcrowding on public transport and in town centres and, in the short term, encourage walking and cycling to become popular choices in the long term.

The trial will mean extending the 11am – 4pm restriction for motor vehicles. This will cover Market Street, Church Street and part of Arwenack Street as far as Quay Street.

Mr Gates said the start of Market Street will have a couple of liftable bollards, not like the rising bollards.

There will be a marshall at the start of the street. They will have a list in terms of registration numbers for people that live at addresses there who will be allowed through.

"The less vehicles the better," he said. "There are some permit holders but we have got to be sensible and balanced."

He said bicycles are one way only and were necessary in order for funding to come through from the travel fund.

Mr Gates said following the success of the scheme during lockdown last year, businesses in the High Street had wanted to be included again.

However, he said this was not possible because the money comes from a different pot but he was more than happy to look at it again.

He said the restrictions may come in earlier if the volume of traffic increases and so many businesses were bringing out tables and chairs now. 

Councillor David Saunby asked Mr Gates whether there was a 'get-out' clause for the restrictions if there was a fall in footfall as not everybody was for it.

Mr Gates confirmed that it was a trial but said High Street businesses wanted to be part of the closure and wanted to be included, which showed its popularity. The volume of people who wanted it was 'significant', he said.