Canterbury City Council has announce a comprehensive package of measures to help the district’s high streets to reopen from Monday 15 June.
You can read the full details on the Council’s website HERE. But these are the key elements:
* A temporary tariff at Holmans Meadow (£2 per hour capped at £3.50), Castle Street multi-storey (£1.90 an hour capped at £3.50) and Station Road West multi-storey (£1.90 an hour capped at £3.50) to provide an alternative to shop workers affected by park and ride, which costs £3.50 to use, being closed
* The reopening of all three park and ride car parks without a bus service at the cost of 50p a day. This would enable some people to walk and cycle into the city or walk to work at a number of retail parks. They could also catch ordinary, timetabled Stagecoach buses if they wish
* Retain free car parking for NHS and social care workers as well as NHS volunteers at non-ANPR car parks
* Distance markings on the ground in Canterbury courtesy of the BID and Whitefriars
* Hand sanitising stations in the main car parks
* Jet washing of key streets by 15 June with others to follow
* Extra graffiti removal in high streets
* Extra opening and cleaning of public toilets in Canterbury, Whitstable and Herne Bay
* Fewer market stallholders and street traders in Canterbury to allow for social distancing – this situation will be kept under review
* Signs welcoming visitors and shoppers and asking them to keep a safe distance and take their time
* Information for visitors to help them plan their trip
* Detailed guidance given to businesses to help them stay Covid Secure especially as government advice evolves
* Information being given to help businesses keep their customers up to date and how to report problems
* Planning the reopening of venues, such as the Beaney
* In Partnership with Canterbury BID place vinyls on empty units and development sites such as Debenhams in Canterbury.
Lisa Carlson, Chief Executive of the Canterbury Business Improvement District (BID) said: “To say the situation we are all facing as lockdown is eased is challenging is an enormous understatement.
“But I have great faith in the resilience and ingenuity of businesses in the BID area and elsewhere to tackle and overcome the challenges. It is a cliche but, in this instance, it happens to be true. This is definitely a marathon not a sprint. Monday is important but so is every day over the next few years.
“We have been working hard behind the scenes during lockdown to help our levy payers but there will be much more to do in the coming weeks. This will be dependent on the feedback we get from retailers, other businesses and, most importantly, our customers.
“We will come across issues that need addressing but there are lots of opportunities too, not least to work even more closely together for a common aim.”
Council Leader Cllr Rob Thomas said: “As lockdown is lifted it is really important for us to work together to reinvigorate our high streets by making them look as good as they can and supporting businesses to help their customers and staff stay safe.
“These are the first steps towards the district getting back on its feet and supporting the district’s longer-term economic recovery will be a priority for the weeks and months to come.
“None of us have faced this sort of challenge before so we need to be fleet of foot, able to adapt quickly, spot problems and come up with innovative answers.
“What we do on Monday might need to be changed by Thursday as we better understand people’s behaviour and needs in what will become a new normal. This will be even more important as different parts of the various strands of the economy are unlocked each with their unique needs.
“The key will be for us all to be in constant contact so we can capitalise on the opportunities presented by an ever-changing and developing situation and do what we can to encourage businesses to survive and then flourish.”
For more information, see the Canterbury City Council Newsroom