Motorists will be barred from driving past Scarborough’s busiest bars from this weekend, amid fears someone will be killed on a night out.
North Yorkshire County Council will ban cars and taxis from driving down St Nicholas Street while the streets are packed with revellers.
The 18-month trial is being implemented due to growing fears about public safety, with people spilling out of bars in the small hours and on to the road.
The road will be closed between 11pm and 5am on Friday and Saturday nights, as well as other busy dates such as bank holiday Sundays.
“This trial closure is being undertaken with pedestrian safety very much in mind at these busy times of night,” said the council’s David Bowe, adding the closure will be “carefully monitored”.
The closure, which comes into force tomorrow, will mean drivers face a potentially lengthy crosstown detour due to the 100 metre restricted zone.
But physical barriers won’t be put in place, allowing emergency services and cyclists to use the stretch of road.
The restrictions come into force at the junction of London Inn Yard, at the Royal Hotel.
Signage will warn drivers of diversions.
Taxi drivers are thought to 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.”
But after The Scarborough News initially revealed the plans in January, others were more critical, with one driver accusing the council of “protecting the drunkards”.
Residents wishing to comment or object to the road closures becoming permanent should write to: Area Three, Whitby Highways Office, Discovery Way, Whitby, North Yorkshire YO22 4PZ.
The deadline for objections is October 12.