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Media Release – 21 June 2021 – Do Nothing “Not An Option”, Town Centre Study Finds

A study commissioned by Bridport Town Council has highlighted key issues and options for the future of the town centre.

The Bridport Access & Movement Study is one of the priority commitments made in the Bridport Area Neighbourhood Plan, and aims to make it easier to walk, cycle and use public transport in and around the area, whilst reducing reliance on the car. A final report published in June by specialist consultants Streets Reimagined and Highgate Transportation – available at – found:

• A growing town with an ageing population;
• A traffic system that is operating near to capacity at certain times of the
• Highly valued green/social spaces;
• Some good examples of walking and cycling routes but lacking join up and connections to become a ‘natural’ choice for short journeys;
• Issues with junctions and surfaces, links and crossings.

The report, which will be considered by town councillors at a meeting on 28 June sets out a range of options for the future, with three broad approaches ranging from incremental ‘small steps’ through to a more fundamental transformation of town centre streets.

A host of stakeholder organisations and some 6,000 people were engaged in the study, which cost the Town Council £4,000 and incorporated all known evidence and data showing how, when and why people access and move around the town centre.
Councillors will now be asked to agree the study’s findings and use them as evidence in support of a more sustainable approach in:

• Dorset Council’s review of the Local Transport Plan, due 2021;
• The review of the access & movement policies in the Bridport Area
Neighbourhood Plan;
• Section 106 Agreements with developers and the spending of the Community
Infrastructure Levy.

Welcoming the report, the Leader of Bridport Town Council, Cllr Dave Rickard said
“The study is a major contribution to the debate over the future of Bridport Town Centre, and will help to shape any proposals for change. Increasingly gridlocked roads are bad for business and for the environment and the study shows that simply watching this happen without intervention is not an option.”

Town Clerk Will Austin said “I’m pleased that so many people locally had their say in the development of the study and the options it provides. The 6,000 people who participated contributed nearly 300 ideas, making this a document that is truly rooted in the community.”

The evidence used in the study will be kept updated so that the findings can be kept under review, including a now biennial town centre health check that incorporates information on traffic, parking and footfall, and a shoppers’ survey. Collection of data for the next health check begins in July 2021, and details including the shoppers’
survey can be found at Hard copy survey forms are available from Bridport Tourist Information Centre, or by calling the Town Council on 01308 456722.


Supporting Information:
• Access & Movement Study (summary and links) –
• Access & Movement Study – specific links:
o Research & Analysis –
o Options Development –
o Supporting Evidence –
• Agenda for 28 June meeting (includes virtual joining details) –
• Council report on the Study (for the above meeting) –
• Town Centre Health Check –

• Will Austin, Town Clerk, Bridport Town Council. Email [email protected] or tel 01308 456722.

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