Planning to deal with influx of visitors

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Concerns about parking congestion and visitor management will be top of the agenda at a meeting on Holy Island today.

Tourists descend on Lindisfarne in their droves every summer, but visitor numbers are expected to soar even further next month when the Lindisfarne Gospels arrive in the region.

The influx will provide a welcome economic boost, but there are fears about the impact on the tiny island and its narrow streets.

Representatives from the Holy Island Partnership are planning to discuss the potential problem with officers from Northumberland County Council.

Public consultation meetings and surveys have already taken place to consider village access, traffic management and car parking including a possibility of introducing residents’ parking permits.

A number of traffic and highways issues have also been addressed and plans are afoot to ensure they are rectified.

These include the reduction of potholes on the island, regular cleaning of the Green Lane car park toilets and the refurbishment of the Crossgate toilets (subject to funding).

It is also planned to remove the broken waymarkers on the causeway with new ones provided by Natural England to be installed.

There are also new signs on the A1 to highlight Lindisfarne Gospels activity on Holy Island.

David Suggett, from the Holy Island Partnership, said: “We hope to gain support on the points raised by the community in the residents and business petition as well as those highlighted in the car parking review.”

The Lindisfarne Gospels, normally housed in the British Library in London, will be Durham from July to September.

A number of events and activities will be happening on the island to coincide with the visit, including a stonework display in the Priory museum and poetry installation in new lookout tower.