I am writing in response to the letter by T Thepes from Blyth regarding parking and traffic management during the North Sea Tall Ships Regatta, (News Post Leader, July 28).
I would like to give assurance that the county council and event team have been consulting very closely with local residents, community organisations and businesses.
We have a thorough traffic management plan in place and are continuing to work with residents and partners to deliver a successful and safe event for all.
Our consultation, which meets all legal requirements, began in spring. This has included personal visits to residents and businesses in Blyth closest to the main event area.
The Tall Ships Information Centre at the Keel Row Shopping Centre, Blyth, is open Wednesday to Saturday for anyone with inquiries about the event, and information is available on the Tall Ships website.
The North Sea Tall Ships Regatta is an incredibly exciting event taking place over the August Bank Holiday – the largest event ever to be held in the county. Some 500,000 visitors are expected to visit the magnificent ships and enjoy the free entertainment, which includes nightly fireworks.
We are encouraging people to use public transport and to walk or cycle to the event, but we know that many visitors will want to drive to Blyth.
Our park-and-ride car parks, south and north, are large, secure car parks with regular shuttle buses that will take visitors to the heart of the event and ease congestion.
We urge drivers to take advantage of the discounted park-and-ride rate by pre-booking via the Tall Ships website at www.tallshipsblyth2016.com or through Ticketline at www.ticketline.co.uk/north-sea-tall-ships-regatta-park-and-ride#bio
All Blue Badge parking must be pre-booked by calling Ticketline on 0161 832 1111.
Councillor Val Tyler
Cabinet member for Arts, Leisure and Culture, Northumberland County Council