The former leader of Salisbury City Council is "disappointed" to see the low traffic zone being suspended and "very confused" about a crucial meeting mentioned by Wiltshire Council in its decision to scrap it.

Wiltshire Council has confirmed today (November 20) that the controversial People Friendly Salisbury scheme will be scrapped at the end of the month following a lack of support expressed by Salisbury City Council.

Cllr Jeremy Nettle has always been in favour of the project but was forced to step down from his role as city council leader following disagreements with fellow Conservative councillors who oppose the scheme.

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He lost a vote of no confidence at the end of last month.

Talking about the meeting referred to by the council, Cllr Nettle said: "Under my watch that has never happened, unless something happened between Monday evening and today then I can say that that never happened because it was never deliberated at full council."

He added: "I know that some of our members wanted to put a stop to it, I know members of the public that wanted it to stop but I've never seen anything in writing to say that this council was objecting it."

The Journal understands that a meeting took place on Thursday November 19. However, only newly-elected council leader Cllr Liz Sirman and deputy leader Cllr Simon Jackson took part in it.

Talking about the county council's decision to suspend the project indefinitely, Cllr Nettle said he was "disappointed" but admitted it wasn't the right time to carry out the trial.

"I'm disappointed that the scheme has been halted but I understand why it's been suspended," he said.

"I know the BID are very concerned about businesses surviving Christmas, if that's the reason I can see why it's been suspended. I do understand that we are in lockdown and there's less traffic so you could argue that it isn't a fair trial."

According to Cllr Nettle, the concept of a "People Friendly Salisbury" originated from a request from the government asking councils to look at ways to facilitate social distancing in the city centre.

"We had a proposition to remove some of the non-residential parking so we could widen our Medieval streets and then the People Friendly Salisbury came as a response to that and most of us were comfortable with the fact it was a trial," he said.

Asked whether he'd like the scheme to be reintroduced in the future, Cllr Nettle said: "Yes, because it's a trial and we don't have enough evidence.

"We're talking about the future of the city centre and I think less than a few weeks is not enough to decide what the future for the city centre should look like."