Bath’s Circus gets coach ban
Bath’s famous landmark, the Georgian terrace of The Circus, has been closed to tourist coaches.
Bath & North East Somerset (BANES) issued a traffic order almost without preamble, according to local operators, with all PSVs apart from local service buses and open-top sightseeing buses banned from 2 May, for what BANES says is an experimental period.
Martin Curtis, MD of Bath Bus Company, said the ban has been mooted for two or three years, though the traffic order still came as a surprise. He said he broadly supports the restriction, particularly as his company’s open-toppers find themselves facing tourist coaches they cannot pass.
“There’s already a traffic restriction for coaches on Brock Street, one of the approach roads for the Circus. In effect, BANES is extending that restriction,” he told Bus & Coach Buyer. Martin said the narrow nature of Brock Street exacerbated by street parking can prevent PSVs passing each other and, though banned to tourist coaches, the police are not enforcing the ban effectively.
Asked whether coach tour companies take advantage of his open-top service to tour the city, he said they didn’t, partly because many groups are not given enough time in Bath, and tend to visit the Roman Baths then leave.