Taxi plans for Stowmarket

SIX sites in Stowmarket are today being earmarked for a potential late-night taxi rank in the town centre.Stowmarket Town Council wants to establish a base for taxis to try and reduce anti-social behaviour problems caused by wandering revellers unable to get home.

SIX sites in Stowmarket are today being earmarked for a potential late-night taxi rank in the town centre.

Stowmarket Town Council wants to establish a base for taxis to try and reduce anti-social behaviour problems caused by wandering revellers unable to get home.

It says many of the town's noise and litter problems are the result of clubbers who spill out on to the streets late at night. It suggests enabling people to congregate in one place would cut the troubles.

The idea of providing a taxi rank was put on the cards in 1999 and 2003 but when a suitable site could not be agreed, the proposals were never followed up.


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Councillor Frank Whittle said: “What we don't want is people buying their kebab and chips at one end of the town and walking through the town, causing a nuisance as they go, to reach somewhere to catch a taxi.

“I think somewhere near Joker's nightclub would be ideal and I really think it would make a difference.

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“It would be a tremendous advantage if we could get people out of the town centre quickly after they've been drinking.

“We are hoping to start a large rejuvenation project of the town next year and it would be nice if we could sort this problem out first.”

Sites put forward for possible rank locations are outside the Market Place's Abbey Bank, at the bicycle/motorcycle park on the corner of Stricklands Road and Ipswich Street, the Mid Suffolk District Council car park near the Regal Theatre, the area opposite jokers nightclub, outside the Mind premises on Ipswich Street and in the Market Place.

Taxi drivers consulted by the council say they want a lay-by which could hold at least six cars at one time, close to town centre.

The council said picking a suitable site is vital because it does not want to attract people into town centre late at night for fears of increasing criminal damage and dropping litter. It is also against losing car parking spaces and putting a rank close to businesses which have in the past suffered broken windows and vandalism.

The town council will meet to try and agree a site on Wednesday.

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