SADLY, Mr David James is all too right, (‘We’re fed up being ignored’, February 20). As Chairman of the Knutsford Chamber of Trade in the 1990s, pedestrianisation was a hot topic, and I had to tread a finely balanced line between 80 per cent of my members views, virulently anti pedestrianisation, and my own personal views and the 20 per cent minority, wholly in favour of pedestrianisation, having seen for myself how young parents battled to negotiate their pushchairs along a bottom street not fit for that purpose, and how people with wheelchairs and electric buggy’s simply never came to bottom street because it was inaccessible along the narrow pavements.

We carried out a long consultation, with a counter campaign by those against, who urged their customers to support against by signing a petition. I even had some shopkeepers who boycotted my business, and were verbally abusive to me because of my personal views on pedestrianisation, despite my being scrupulously fair in representing them – looking back, all rather pathetic, but Mr James, hits the nail on the head when he says that without the support of the town’s businesses, any scheme to alter the town centre will fail, because the council has always listened to business rather than residents.

Until the council squares its plans with business in the town before any consultation – sadly, I believe there is no longer a Chamber of Trade in the town that the council can refer to – then we are wasting our time commenting on anything that smacks of pedestrianisation, because business will continue to oppose it, as they did with a plan I suggested to move the Makers Market to the Waitrose car park in support of residents in the town centre who find it disturbing.

But if a huge majority exists to pedestrianise the town and alter the traffic flow, then business has nothing to fear, and people will return to a more pedestrian friendly environment in bottom street in droves, and business will thrive.

Richard Cussons, KPS Management