Nightspot street could be closed off to save revellers

St Nicholas street  pic Richard Ponter 150208c
St Nicholas street pic Richard Ponter 150208c

Scarborough Council could ban motorists from driving down St Nicholas Street on Friday and Saturday nights – over fears someone could be killed on a night out.

There are growing concerns that there will be a tragedy on the busy street, as drunken revellers dart between cars after visiting nightspots such as Blue Lounge and Quids Inn.

Now the council is considering a pilot scheme that would prohibit vehicles from entering the street on Friday and Saturday nights.

Taxis drivers have cautiously welcomed the proposals, although there are concerns about the logistics, with fears it could prove a “nightmare” to enforce.

“It’s truly a miracle that nobody has been hit and killed on the street,” said one taxi driver.

“It could make it a bit more difficult to navigate around town, but something had to be done urgently.

“I consider myself a really good driver, but even I’ve almost hit a few people.”

Scarborough Council admits details of the pilot scheme are currently “vague”, although there is hope the pilot could be launched as early as February.

Neighbouring residents are currently talking to the council about how any ban would affect them.

According to data on the police’s online crime map, there were no recorded car accidents on the street in 2014, although there were unclassified crimes and hundreds of incidents of anti-social behaviour.

Details of the pilot’s logistics, including the location of the closure, are expected to be confirmed by the council in the near future.

But a town hall source, with ties to Scarborough’s nightlife, said: “Depending on where they re-route taxis and cars, it could be a bit of a nightmare.

“It could also be really hard to enforce, and it will be interesting to see where they start closing the road from.”

A spokesperson for Scarborough Council said: “We’re looking into the possibility of doing this as a pilot in conjunction with North Yorkshire County Council and other partners.

“It’s not confirmed yet but the focus of the pilot is likely to be some Friday and Saturday evenings when drinking in the bars and queues on the pavements peak.”

l What do you think? Will a nighttime closure to traffic make the town centre safer at night, or will it just create extra chaos? Email Ian Johnson or call him on (01723) 860166.