A survey of “back street” residents in Keswick shows they are more concerned about parking and congestion than the town’s controversial new one-way system, according to local councillor Peter Terry.
He has delivered around 120 letters to houses in the nearby area, including many B&Bs, asking if they want to keep the traffic system which is undergoing a trial in Station Street and St John’s Street.
Early responses by email showed that just three people opposed the one-way route, with those in favour quickly into double figures — but Mr Terry says the real concern is over the increase in traffic being diverted through the “rabbit run” back streets already packed with parked cars.
“I have been looking into the effect of traffic flows on the back streets as a result of the implementation of the one-way system,” said the independent councillor, who was one of three councillors who voted at last month’s town council meeting against the trial continuing.
He feels the one-way system has just moved a traffic problem to other areas, particularly the back streets and Derwent Street.
His concerns prompted him to hand-deliver letters to homes on the electoral register in Church, Eskin, Greta, Leonard, Derwent, Southey, Blencathra and Helvellyn streets as well as Radcliffe Place for his survey after councillor Tony Lwood, who represents Keswick on Cumbria’s highways authority, had carried out a survey on Station and St John’s streets.
Mr Terry said his own survey showed particular concern about Derwent Street because of “traffic increase and an escalation in car-related dangerous occurrences” which he said had made it “a particularly vulnerable road”.
He said back street parking was “the elephant in the room” and that it was to have been tackled with the introduction of a residents’ parking scheme, as recommended in the Keswick Transport Study, until that was put on hold because of coronavirus.
“Now that my survey has identified issues that I was not particularly expecting, I am intending to follow-up on them.
“I have therefore asked that a progress report be included on the September’s town council meeting agenda,” said Mr Terry.