Just as the sight of the first snowdrop brings joy to our hearts as it heralds that the dark days of winter are behind us, I had the same feeling this morning when I walked into town and saw the return of more of the market stalls to Bridport’s high streets.
It was a pleasure to meet a number of the stallholders, who were all very pleased to be back and impressed with the way in which the public has adapted to the new layouts and way of operating. We are extremely fortunate in having so many purveyors of locally produced, and specialist food produce available, alongside an increasing number of arts and craftspeople opening their stalls once again.
Daryl Chambers our Town Surveyor and his team have been working hard both behind the scenes and on the ground to make this possible. Having such wide streets and pavements means that the challenge of maintaining social distancing rules alongside the market can be met. A new spacing plan means that the stalls are spread out and we have the option of using both Bucky Doo Square and the Arts Centre forecourt along with the lay-bys. This has enabled non essential stalls to reopen as well. All in all I had a very pleasant morning strolling the high streets meeting the stallholders and members of the public that recognised their new mayor.
That said I was shocked to see two lycra clad cyclists attempting to ride round the corner of South Street into West Street via the pavement. This is a pinch point where maintaining social distancing rules is difficult at the best of times and this sort of behaviour does not help. Was it worth the few extra seconds on your Strava result to put others at risk?
And finally much as we all love our four legged friends I wonder whether there are ways in which dog owners could help in these restricted times by ensuring that the combination of dog, owner and lead don’t cause difficulties with social distancing.