Over 500 sign petition to keep Pinstone Street in Sheffield city centre traffic-free

Hundreds have signed a petition for health professionals who want to keep a traffic ban in Sheffield city centre.

Wednesday, 22nd September 2021, 11:55 am

Some 549 have signed the ‘Save space for walking and cycling in Sheffield’ petition at Change.org set up by Sheffield GP Jo Maher.

Intended for Sheffield City Council, it states they want to see changes to Pinstone Street retained so people can feel safe walking and cycling, to create clean air, protect other active travel schemes and funding, improve public health and mitigate the climate emergency. The authority wants to be a ‘zero carbon city’ by 2030.

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Jo Maher.

The petition adds: “We are gravely concerned that suggested steps to reverse measures to create space for walking and cycling introduced during the pandemic would be a retrograde and harmful step for the health of the population of Sheffield.”

Signatory Elizabeth Highland commented: “I'm a resident, parent and medical professional of Sheffield. I care, agree and support all that is outlined in this petition. I use this area daily as part of my active travelling around Sheffield.”

Pinstone Street was closed to traffic in June last year to allow social distancing. The pavement was widened and 36 buses rerouted.

The controversial move led to complaints from passengers and Labour council leader Terry Fox has called for it to be partially reopened.

Pinstone Street in Sheffield. Picture Scott Merrylees

Since then, millions in funding has been won or bid for for city centre and active travel schemes on the basis that it is traffic-free. The Greens, who share power with Labour in Sheffield, say they are at risk of being cancelled or clawed back if the road reopens.

A Sheffield City Council spokeswoman said: “The leader of the council has asked for a review to be conducted into the closure of Pinstone Street to motor traffic to ensure it’s meeting the needs of people in the city centre.

“Feedback from scrutiny, alongside discussions within the co-operative executive, will be used to inform the outcome of the review.”

Pinstone Street in Sheffield was traffic banned in June 2020. Picture Scott Merrylees

Councillors debated Pinstone Street for four hours at a scrutiny board meeting. It doesn’t have any power but it was seen as the first step towards a decision being made.

Meanwhile 74.1 per cent of people said they want to keep it traffic-free in a survey by @HelpSheffield on Twitter. Some 355 votes were cast.

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Thank you. Nancy Fielder, editor.