City centre pedestrianisation trial

Consultation events and feedback

Lichfield city centre pedestrianisation

April 2023 consultation events

Thank you to everyone who came along to Darwin Hall in April 2023 to attend one of two workshops about the city centre pedestrianisation trial. We were really grateful to you all for coming and sharing your thoughts and ideas.

During the sessions, we asked people to share their ideas of how the current experimental traffic order (ETRO) could be altered, amended or improved. We also asked people to share their concerns about the trial with us.

Below are some of the ideas and suggestions made by people who attended. This is not an exhaustive list, so if your comments are not listed below, they will be considered as part of the wider feedback we have received from the trial.

We have also received other ideas and comments, both in support of and recommending changes to the experimental traffic order (ETRO), at drop-in sessions, through emails and through the feedback form which will also need to be considered as part of the trial review which will take place during the first six-months of the ETRO trial.

We hope the list below reassures you that the council is listening and will consider all comments and suggestions before making any permanent decisions on the trial and future arrangements.

Event feedback


Some of the ideas suggested by people who attended the meetings on Monday 17 April 2023

Part time pedestrianisation of the city centre

A number of people suggested part-time pedestrianisation – for example only on a weekend or only in the afternoons. This would allow disabled people and wheelchair users to still park in the city centre to carry out essential tasks during the week/mornings, such as going to the dentist, shopping or visiting the bank.

Allow for night-time disabled driver access to the city centre

Allow disabled drivers to access the city centre past 6pm, so that they also can visit the city for night-time events. Navigating the city and car parking in the dark is even more challenging, so parking in the city centre after shopping hours would be beneficial for disabled drivers and passengers.

Introduce a residents’ nip-in parking permit in city centre car parks

Allow either disabled, or all local residents, to apply for/pay for ‘nip-in’ parking permit – this would give residents a sticker that is recognised by car park wardens and that allows a max of, for example 30 mins or 1 hour parking in any district council owned city car park. This would encourage local trade for businesses and alleviate pressure on on-street disabled spaces.

Introduce a barrier/tag system to allow continued disabled access to the city centre

Provide an ANPR/tag system that could allow disabled residents continued access to the city centre pedestrianised zone - either at any time, or at restricted times. Residents (including those who live in the pedestrianised zone) would have to register first, and anyone driving through the city centre without having registered would receive a penalty.  

Introduce more city centre drop-off zones, particularly allowing access to Dam Street

Whilst city disabled parking spaces have been removed (either stand-alone or in conjunction with other listed ideas), create more drop-off zones in the city centre pedestrianised area. Ensure the drop-off zones allow adequate time to escort someone to an appointment, including those with severely impaired mobility, 1-2-1 care/supervision needs.

Retain some disabled parking spaces on Bore Street

Create (either stand-alone or in conjunction with other listed ideas) short-stay disabled parking spaces on Bore Street, so that those using drop-off spaces can use these for a slightly longer period to collect people they are supporting.

Investigate a disabled parking zone on Bore Street

Reinvestigate whether a two-way parking zone can be created in Bore Street with access from the Friary. Similarly reinvestigate whether traffic could access Bore Street from Tamworth Street, without having to circle the Market Square.

Introduce more disabled parking spaces in the Bird Street car park (B&M)

A number of people suggested the number of disabled parking spaces in Bird Street car park was not adequate and they are not being used appropriately – people parking up to eat lunch. It was suggested a larger number of disabled spaces should be located in the car park (even relocated from other car parks) and the spaces should be better enforced.

More disabled parking bays on Wade Street and Frog Lane

Introduce more disabled parking spaces on Wade Street and Frog Lane.

More city centre seating

Remove flower planters and replace with safe and secure seating across the city, so that disabled people and those with limited mobility have more places to stop and rest.

Disabled park and ride

Offer a disabled park and ride bus into the city centre on a regular basis, so disabled people or those with limited mobility can still access the facilities.

Introduce more facilities to support disabled and less able customers

Introduce more dropped kerbs across the city, more seating and more car parking spaces that support people who use mobility scooters and electric wheelchairs. Make Lombard Street car park easier to access for those with mobility issues/those in a wheelchair. Address the issue of cyclists in the city.

Participants also fed back on how the trial has been managed to date and asked that:




People felt that the communications about the trial needs to be improved, with better city signage (city centre posters and flyers to cars parked incorrectly) and more communications to those involved, as well as wider residents. People also felt that emails and calls in relation to the scheme should be responded to in a more timely manner.

Public realm strategy

Please requested we publish the Lichfield City Centre Masterplan that provided the strategic backdrop for the changes – download now.

Equality impact assessment

People requested we publish the equality impact assessment that has been carried out and will be updated throughout the process – download now.

AccessAble report

People requested we publish the AccessAble report – download now.

Usage statistics and blue badge driver statistics

People requested we publish city centre usage statistics, accident statistics and blue badge driver statistics – we are working on gathering the most recent available data and will update this website section in due course. It was highlighted that the majority of traffic in the city centre is made up of delivery drivers, those accessing city parking from within the pedestrianised zone, pick-up drivers, taxis and people driving through illegally. It was felt that disabled drivers actually make up a small number of drivers in the city.

Clarity over fines during ETRO period

Traffic wardens are issuing notices (that look like fines) to cars who park in the pedestrianised zone during the ETRO/trial that are not clear to those receiving them. We are looking into whether we can also place a leaflet on cars explaining the notices and trial more clearly, so people understand what the notices mean, and can feed in their views.

Targeted business survey

Circulate a survey for local businesses to see if they support the proposals and whether the trial is having an impact on their trade, and what ideas they have.

Meetings – offer online and in a variety of locations so more people can attend

As the trial progresses, people requested we host more meetings in more accessible locations, including an online meeting for those who cannot attend in person due to access issues. People also requested we make sure microphones and a visual presentation are offered at the meetings, so anyone with limited hearing or hearing loss are better supported. People asked us to consider providing a BSL interpreter if any customers whose first language is BSL registers to attend events.

Publish a link to the petition against the ETRO on the council’s website

People requested we publish a link to the petition against the ETRO in This has now been published to

July 2023 consultation events

Thank you to everyone who came along to Darwin Hall in July 2023 to attend one of two feedback sessions on the city centre pedestrianisation trial, particularly tailored for blue badge, disabled and less able city users.

We are really grateful to you all for coming and sharing your thoughts and ideas.

At both sessions an potential amendment to the experimental traffic order (ETRO) was discussed, which was to introduce part-time pedestrianisation, with access allowed to blue badge holders on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays at any time.

Under the proposal Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays would continue to be fully pedestrianised.

People at the sessions were asked for their views on this proposal, as well as wider views and comments on the trial.

Attendees were also brought up to date on recent improvements delivered to support the trial including:

  • New resting points have been installed between Bird Street car park and Market Street, and Lombard Street car park and Market Square.
  • New directional signage installed at the Tamworth Street gateway.
  • Directional signage to Lombard Street car park has been installed.
  • Clearer signage on the height restriction bar into the top layer of Lombard Street car park has been installed.
  • LED lighting has been installed above the seating between Bird Street car park and Market Street.

Event feedback

Topics discussed Notes
Part time proposal

Many attendees were pleased to know the council was considering a part-time trial, but felt that the following should be considered:

  • Allow access on at least one-day at the weekend.
  • Allow access in the evenings (e.g. from 6pm daily) so disabled people can access evening entertainment.
  • Allow access on a main market day (Friday or Saturday).
Remove restrictions for blue badge holders

Many attendees still felt that the trial should be amended to remove all restrictions for disabled/blue badge drivers who should be allowed access at all times.

  • Blue badge holders could register for a pass.
  • Blue badge holders were not the main problem – delivery drivers make up the bulk of city users.
  • Blue badge holders drive more slowly than other city users so do not present a hazard.
Access to Bore Street Attendees felt the council should further explore the use of Bore Street for blue badge holders. It was explained at the session that the council had undertaken considerable investigation (with independent advice) into this option, but it was not feasible as a two-way street due to the nature of the junction onto The Friary.
Concerns about charity shop success and success of wider businesses

Attendees felt that the trial was impacting negatively on both donations to, and purchases at, charity shops.

Other attendees felt that the changes would only benefit food and drink businesses and would disadvantage small businesses that rely on footfall from disabled city users.

It was highlighted by the council that there is widespread evidence that pedestrianisation can enhance cities and help them to become more vibrant. It was also highlighted that footfall figures to date suggest city footfall has not been detrimentally impacted by the pedestrianisation trial.

Condition of pavements Some attendees highlighted the condition of pavements in the city is an ongoing accessibility issue.   
Proposed demolition of the Birmingham Road multi-storey car park Several attendees raised concerns about the demolition of the multi-storey car park and the fact that they will then struggle to reach the Lichfield Garrick, as there is not adequate nearby car parking. The council highlighted the district council house car park is available for public use in the evening and is often under-used.
Electric scooters/mobility scooters Concern was raised that proper use of electric/mobility scooters needs to be better enforced in the city centre.
Lack of statistics and clear reasoning for pedestrianisation

Concern was raised that because the trial began after the covid restrictions had been in place, that the council should stop the trial and gather six months of statistics before determining the best proposal.

Attendees that more research into other towns that have pedestrianised should be undertaken.

Introduce a city pedestrianisation train One attendee suggested that a pedestrian train should be introduced to take people from car parks to shops. Some attendees felt that this would not be accessible to disabled users, for example wheelchair users.
More disabled parking bays on Wade Street and Frog Lane Attendees suggested introducing more disabled parking spaces on Wade Street and Frog Lane.
Introduction of more facilities to support disabled and less able customers Attendees suggested introducing more dropped kerbs across the city, more seating and more car parking spaces that support people who use mobility scooters and electric wheelchairs. Attendees felt such enhancements would make Lombard Street car park easier to access for those with mobility issues/those in a wheelchair.

Business consultation events 2023

We held two business workshops in June and July 2023 to discuss the impact of the pedestrianisation trial so far on city businesses, hear their feedback and discuss any suggestions they had in relation to the scheme.

Thank you to all the businesses that took part.

Attendees agreed on the whole that pedestrianisation could be positive for the city, but several key issues were raised:

Event feedback

Deliveries Businesses had asked their delivery drivers to make drop-offs before 12noon, but that this was not always possible for a city business to control or enforce.
Concerns about vehicles accessing the city and excessive speeds Businesses were concerned that vehicles are entering the city the wrong way and driving at excessive speeds and felt more enforcement was needed.
Evening access Businesses were concerned that cars are still accessing the city during the evenings and felt more enforcement was needed.
Revert to previous arrangements Some attendees felt that whilst pedestrianisation could be positive in theory it might be more practical to revert to the previous arrangements.
Part time access

Businesses were very supportive of the proposal to introduce a part-time approach, allowing blue badge holders/permit holders access on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays at any time.

Some businesses suggested extending the part-time to include Thursdays, as footfall on Thursdays was considered low.

Charity shop donations

Those charity shops that have seen a reduction in donations felt that it was not directly attributable to the pedestrianisation scheme and highlighted donations usually drop during summer months, and that out-of-town charity drop-off points have had an impact on donations, as they are more accessible by car, whereas charity shops on streets that have always been pedestrianised (e.g. Market Street) are less accessible, regardless of the pedestrianisation.

Other charity shops reported that they haven’t seen any reduction in donations.

Online survey 2023

A recent survey about the pedestrianisation trial so far garnered nearly 3,000 responses which showed:

  • 39% love the scheme.
  • 21% like the scheme but want to see some refinements.
  • Nearly 15% want it to stop and of these respondents 62% were blue badge holders.
  • Over 50% of respondents said that it is easier to walk around in the city centre and 39% said it felt safer. 29% said the city feels more vibrant and welcoming.

During a recent feedback workshop attended by local businesses, the new proposals were also met with a favourable response, which is detailed in full in this section.

In response to this survey and other feedback from residents, blue badge holders and city centre businesses, refinements to the ongoing experimental pedestrianisation scheme were launched on 31 July 2023 that aim to strike a balance between fostering a pedestrian-friendly environment and ensuring access to the town centre for all.

The refinements will introduce a hybrid/part-time pedestrianisation model that will see:

  • Unrestricted access granted to blue badge holders and permit holders on Mondays (from midnight on Sunday), Tuesdays, and Wednesdays (to midnight on Wednesday night) throughout the day. 
  • Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays will see pedestrianisation continue in line with the current trial's guidelines.

View the results of our recent survey.

An update on the trial was considered by the council's Overview & Scrutiny committee on 2 August 2023 - read the papers.

Positive comments about the scheme

To provide balance to the views gathered at the recent consultation event, we have also gathered together the positive responses we have had to the pedestrianisation scheme so far.

These include:


Highlight theme views

A sample of some of the comments we have received

The scheme will make the city centre safer

‘Traffic flowing through the centre is dangerous to pedestrians.’

‘The centre of town would be a better place if residents and visitors could walk without fear of being knocked down by a delivery driver.’

‘A significant minority of people drive through the centre at speed with little consideration, often coming extremely close to pedestrians. This is an accident waiting to happen, especially for the more vulnerable of any age. Cars and pedestrians are not compatible with footfall in Lichfield.’ 

‘The need is even more urgent to provide space for pedestrians to walk safely. Sometimes there is a constant stream of traffic through the city’s streets. It would be nice if more outdoor seating outside for cafes and pubs was available, without traffic noise and population.’

‘I think that it should be imposed fully, as the lack of cars has made a massive difference to the welfare of pedestrians overall.’

The scheme will make the city centre more attractive to tourists

‘Banning the cars would make the centre more harmonious so people would spend longer there and spend more in the local businesses.’

‘Pedestrianisation is a really good idea. Street cafes provide a lovely atmosphere in summer. Traffic flowing through the centre is dangerous to pedestrians and when eating in pavement cafes. Pedestrianisation needs to be clearly identified and enforced.’

The scheme will make the city cleaner

‘I support the proposals. We need more promotion of safe active travel and lower levels of air pollution especially for young children in buggies or walking.’

‘Pedestrianisation increases safety, reduces exposure to pollution and makes the city centre more appealing to browse.’

Comments in support of additional blue badge spaces at Bird Street car park, suggestion of additional spaces at Wade Street, and general comments re car parks

‘I very much support the pedestrianisation scheme and would also support an all-day ban on traffic. I am a blue badge holder because of difficulty walking, but can manage the short distance from the Cross Keys car park. This is often my daily exercise. I do use the benches in the Market Square for a rest and would welcome a few more dotted about to make things a little easier.’

"We shop in Lichfield regularly. I am a blue badge holder and have a young son who's four. I think there is plenty of parking in Lichfield and the pedestrian zone is a great idea. The for walking distance is just as far from other parking areas such as the road by the Garrick theatre. Parking behind B&M is much closer to the library, cathedral and other shops than some of the on street car parking spaces.’

‘I am a blue badge holder. I would like to see full pedestrianisation between 10am - 4pm, no cars or deliveries at all. It would be good to see more spaces in Wade Street. I feel certain that my needs will be catered for on the car parks.’

Comment re changing the hours of the pedestrianisation

‘It’s great to have a pedestrianised zone but there must be adequate provision for disabled parking across the city which today there is nowhere near enough. The hours of pedestrianisation need to be shorter or you will kill the evening trade for takeaways and restaurants, especially for those on Bore Street and in the arcade. It should be pedestrianised 12noon – 6pm or 7pm.’

Comments re shopmobility

‘I need the car so that I can still visit the town centre and very much appreciate that disabled parking is provided and that it is also free of charge. It may be helpful for the consideration of a scheme whereby power assisted wheelchairs and small mobility scooters could be hired for a small fee for the  genuine disabled who wish to remain independent but cannot manage the distances.’

‘Ensure you have provided enough accessible spaces for blue badge holders. Move shopmobility to the point where you have the blue badge parking.’

The council provides scooter hire service (called shopmobility) which costs £5 per annum, plus £1 every time you use a scooter. Customers need to book in advance and collect the scooters from The Friary car park. Find out more.

Comments re Tamworth Street

‘I believe the proposals could go further. I would particularly like to see the whole of Tamworth Street pedestrianised. I currently try to avoid walking up Tamworth Street because the pavements are quite thin and with a pram I have often had to detour into the road.’

Comments in support of the trial consultation period

‘Overall I am very much in favour of a pedestrianised city centre and really appreciate the level of open consultation and discussions following feedback that has been raised.’