A PETITION has been lodged with Bradford Council opposing an ambitious vision to pedestrianise a major city centre thoroughfare.

The dream of a 'Market Street revival' was unveiled earlier this year by Bradford businessman Doug Mclean, who boasts Tiffin Sandwiches, Tiffin Coffee, City Vaults, the Lord Clyde and Ginger Goose as part of his portfolio.

His idea stems from the belief that the regeneration of the street could be the key to drawing people back into the city centre.

The case for pedestrianisation was submitted to the Council and Bradford BID team in early April and people in favour of the idea have been able to put their name to a petition in a mark of support.

But a counter petition has been launched, with concerns raised about how bus services would be affected.

It says: "There are no viable and convenient alternatives to the bus stops currently placed on Market Street, which would lead to worse scheduling and timekeeping of the services and potential loss of an already depleted resource that many people have to rely on. Market Street allows for access to banks that are stripped out of our surrounding neighbourhoods, preventing people being able to get to them will affect the elderly and less physically able the most.

"Market Street is also the only level access to the town's main post office, so this is another vital service that the council would be denying people were it to pedestrianise the street.

"There is a carpark entrance that would no longer be accessible, jeopardising the revitalisation of the Broadway and surrounding business. Existing businesses would find replenishment and access severely curtailed.

"The taxi rank is only accessible from Market Street, which would affect the nightlife of the city, including the surrounding pubs, cinema, revamped Odeon and St George's Hall and the Alhambra. The money that would be spent on this could be better spent on other services that we are repeatedly informed have been "cut to the bone"."

A First West Yorkshire spokesperson said: "We have not been approached about this proposal, but we have a good working relationship with the Council and we will look to discuss the detail with them.”

A spokesperson for the Market Street pedestrianisation campaign said: "We welcome a full debate about the proposals we have put forward and we are working with all those who make contact to try and address any concerns.

"We believe that our ideas will improve access for people along Market Street and help encourage businesses to invest.

"Any major changes proposed will always raise concerns and we believe that the initial plans will not affect access to Market Street and can improve access to the rest of the city centre."

Those behind the campaign say the plan is being proposed now as it will build on schemes announced by Bradford Council for further regeneration of the city centre.

A brochure, titled 'Reclaiming Bradford City Streets. Connecting the Regeneration Vision' said: “If integrated into these plans, the costs of the work will be significantly reduced whilst the economic and social benefits will provide a return both to the Council, investors and the people of Bradford. As local business people and investors we have looked at the idea of pedestrianisation before, but we recognised that, in our view correctly, the Council had to prioritise City Park and the Broadway.

“We believe that now is the time to progress with our ideas and we hope that the proposal will be given serious consideration by the Council as part of the wider regeneration schemes currently proposed for the city.”

Organisers are currently in the process of setting up dates to have a stall in The Broadway to discuss the proposals with the public. To see both petitions, visit www.bradford.gov.uk/your-council/epetitions/epetitions