Seafront parking has been suspended as part of efforts to deter visitors to Southend seafront this weekend and ahead of the Bank Holiday weekend.
The emergency traffic regulation order notice that been put into place will also give the council the ability to close roads if necessary and if requested by the police.
The order relates to parking, unloading, waiting, stopping vehicles and pay and display bays at a number of areas including:
- Belton Way West
- Belton Way East
- Belton Gardens
- High Street in Leigh
- Chalkwell Esplanade
- The Leas
- Western Esplanade
- Marine Parade
- Royal Terrace
- Royal Mews
- Eastern Esplanade
- Thorpe Esplanade.
The measures follow the launch of the ‘Don’t Visit Southend’ campaign which is encouraging visitors to stay away, and for local people to only use the seafront if they live in close proximity.
Cllr Ron Woodley, cabinet member for transport, says: “Our clear message is that we don’t want people to visit Southend. It is a sad but necessary thing to say but as visitor attraction we are closed for business until we get through this.
“We have suspended all parking bays across the seafront from Leigh-on-Sea to Shoeburyness to deter visitors and have a plan in place with the police to close the road if we need to, and if people are gathering and creating issues. We hope this won’t be necessary this weekend, but this order gives us the option if we need to.
“Council community safety officers and police colleagues will be providing a visible presence over the weekend and we are ready to act where needed.”
Teams will be in place from early Saturday morning to manage the car parking situation and ensure that where people are on the seafront they are observing social distancing.
Should a road closure be necessary due to crowds of visitors gathering, residents who live in roads that use the seafront for egress will still be able to do that. The full order can be read on our website.