The temporary disabled bays in the Bird Street car park
The temporary disabled bays in the Bird Street car park

A Labour councillor says changes to disabled parking provision in Lichfield city centre has hit those in greatest need the hardest.

Lichfield District Council has suspended on street blue badge on Bore Street, Conduit Street, Market Street and Tamworth Street.

Disabled provision has been moved to Bird Street and Lombard Street.

But Cllr Rob Birch said the removal of the on-street bays would have a negative impact.

Cllr Rob Birch
Cllr Rob Birch

“Councillors were never consulted on this and if we had been I for one would have opposed it.

“It is essential that we are inclusive of all who want to enjoy the city centre and make use of its facilities.

“The disabled parking areas have been established for many years and are a great facilitator to those who need access to the town.

“I don’t think the removal of disabled parking to the outskirts has made a great deal of difference to the social distancing but has detrimented those in greatest need. 

“For me the benefits of this do not in any way outweigh the problems it has caused for many.

“It is also a little offensive to see the elderly and disabled members of our society moved out of the centre like some sort of social problem.”

Cllr Rob Birch

The switch came after Lichfield MP Michael Fabricant said the permanent pedestrianisation of the city centre could boost tourism and trade.

But Cllr Birch said such a proposals was “inconsiderate”.

“There have been recent calls by some, not least our MP to completely close off the centre to vehicles and have it fully pedestrianised.

“This will massively disadvantage disabled people needing to park outside shops or banks, elderly people needing to be dropped off or those needing direct access.

“It is ill thought out and inconsiderate.

“The majority of the centre is already pedestrianised and the through route provides a vital lifeline to many. I’d urge anyone who objects to complain to their councillor.”

Cllr Rob Birch

Ross

Founder of Lichfield Live and editor of the site.

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