New road closure system in bid to boost use of Alnwick market place
New road closure arrangements for events in Alnwick market place have been agreed.
Alnwick Town Council has approved a one-off annual fee of £400 which will allow it to close the market place off for any event it wants.
Northumberland County Council had previously charged £100 each time there was a road closure for an event.
Town clerk Peter Hately said: “There was certainly a perception that the road closure charges were prohibitive in terms of encouraging people to use it for events.
“We’ve had discussions with the county council and instead of the current £100 road closure fee will pay a one-off £400 fee. It will give clarity on how the market place can be used for events.”
Coun Gordon Castle said: “There will be a process now and the town council will be in charge of it. I really think it’s a major step forward.”
Meanwhile, Coun Martin Harrington raised concerns about the road markings and signage in the market place which is causing parking enforcement issues.
Coun Castle acknowledged: “There are problems with markings on the cobbles. They wear off very quickly and it can make enforcing tickets difficult and appeals are frequent.
“We were initially considering using studs instead of white lines but they are very expensive because each single stud has to be drilled in. Now, if that’s the solution it’s a very expensive one.”
Northumberland Estates is still looking for a new markets operator following the decision by Local Living to end its involvement.
Tender documents to be returned by January 31 are available from www.northumberlandestates.co.uk