Rethink Rugby town centre revamp, urges MP

Mark Pawsey MP
Mark Pawsey MP

Rugby’s MP believes that motorists should not be banned from driving through the town centre as part of the proposed £1m pedestrianisation plans.

Mark Pawsey is calling for a reduced speed limit and traffic calming measures in Church Street and North Street as an alternative.

Mr Pawsey said: “Town centres are important features of any community and in Rugby we are currently faced with a significant decision concerning the future of ours.

“Taking the right decisions today will impact on the kind of town centre that we will have in the future.”

The £1m plan to pedestrianise around the clock tower was revealed as part of a public consultation earlier this year.

The plans include extending Market Place’s pedestrianised area to cover parts of North Street and Church Street.

Only buses, cyclists and taxis would be allowed to drive through.

Mr Pawsey said: “The clock tower should be the focal point of our town centre and the area around it can certainly be improved.

“The current proposals exclude private cars whilst retaining buses and taxis. This appears to be inconsistent. I believe that the vehicles passing through our town centre help to keep it visible and bring trade into it.”

Mr Pawsey said a reduced speed limit and traffic calming would bring ‘environmental improvements’.

He said: “This would make the area attractive to our many visitors and in particular those we expect to arrive during the 2015 Rugby World Cup.”

The aim of the project is to link the High Street with the independent quarter.

A Warwickshire County Council spokesperson said: “We have been encouraged by the response to the consultation which resulted in more than 750 replies.

“Given the depth and breadth of comments provided, we want to give the responses full consideration. We have started discussions with Rugby Borough Council and a decision will be reached in early 2014.”