Council to revisit St Benedicts after concerns over 'impact on policing'

Orange barricades up St Benedicts Street in Norwich. Picture: submitted

submitted

Council officers will revisit a city street which has had a traffic ban imposed in a bid to boost post-lockdown trading after fears over licensing breaches were raised.

Share St Benedicts which will soon to be closed to traffic.
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pPicture: DENISE BRADLEYSt Benedicts which will soon to be closed to traffic. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

St Benedict’s Street in Norwich city centre has seen cars banned – despite vehement opposition from a group of traders – in the hope of aiding businesses in attracting customers as the pandemic eases. But concerns have been raised by the local community about late-night disturbance and noise, and a county councillor has urged the local authority to police the area.

READ MORE: Businesses push council to review car ban on city centre street Danny Douglas, Norfolk county councillor for Mancroft, wrote to Martin Wilby, cabinet member for highways, to highlight the issue.

Danny Douglas, Labour candidate for Mancroft. Pic: Labour Party.Danny Douglas, Labour candidate for Mancroft.

Pic: Labour Party.

He said: “Many businesses were putting out tables and chairs and serving people on the spaces provided by the temporary road order on St Benedict’s. “None of these establishments had licenses to provide any services in these spaces. Some of these establishments have not even applied for a license.”

And Labour councillor Mr Douglas commented: “We’ve been making the council aware. My concern is the impact on policing. “It’s down to the county council to police the space – nobody has got a licence at the moment.”

Martin Wilby, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for highways, infrastructure and transport, at the new A140 Hempnall roundabout.
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pPicture: Simon ParkinMartin Wilby, Norfolk County Council cabinet member for highways, infrastructure and transport, at the new A140 Hempnall roundabout. Picture: Simon Parkin

And he said he was worried about on people living in the area.

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“Residents are concerned about late night stuff,” he said. “They’ve got trucks down there at 5.30am. READ MORE: Fears closure could ‘destroy street’ as traders urge council to rethink

“The poorest people in Norwich live there in private rentals. Lots of families live above shops. “There’s a balanced approach but what we can’t have is people just doing things.”

A Norwich city council spokesman said: “We have not yet granted any licences for businesses on St Benedict’s to have tables and chairs. “If and when licences are granted, then we will have the responsibility of making sure the terms of those licences are adhered to in full.” A spokesman for Norfolk county council said: “The county council’s officers will be visiting traders along St Benedict’s Street again this week following concerns raised by the local community over the weekend.

“We are liaising closely with the police and Norwich city council’s licensing team to balance the needs of the whole community in this matter.” A Norfolk police spokeswoman said officers had not received any calls or complaints regarding licensing breaches taking place on St Benedict’s Street. READ MORE: Businesses block road with vehicles in protest over car ban


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