Town councillors have proposed making parts of a town centre one-way for pedestrians, to encourage social distancing.

They also considered the placing of bollards on Station Street, in Cockermouth, to create a wider pavement. Marking pavements to ensure people queuing outside shops adhered to distancing rules was also discussed.

At an online meeting on Thursday, councillors came up with proposals to put to the county council, which has funding from the government and is looking at measures which can be put in place to help with social distancing and cycleways.

Councillor Stephen Barnes had asked for two proposals be discussed at the meeting: temporarily widening the pavement on Station Street, from the Co-op to past Firn’s, to improve social distancing.

He also wanted the council to discuss a temporary pavement on South Street.

Councillor Grace Bennion said: “It’s clear walking around town and seeing people queuing outside shops that distance perception differs from person to person.

“I think the county council should mark the pavements, this would help ease the social pressures and anxiety people feel.

“The important thing is that people can walk past each other without endangering themselves. It’s so difficult for people with a buggy or wheelchair on Station Street.

“In the supermarket I have seen quite aggressive behaviour. We need to help people.”

Councillors voiced their concerns about shoppers queuing on the narrow pavements and making it impossible to socially distance without stepping on to the road.

Councillor Richard Watson said: “I think we should temporarily stop parking on the Post Office side of Station Street. By cordoning it off we would create a wider pavement.”

Mayor Julie Laidlow, who owns Firn’s Home Hardware Store, pointed out that delivery wagons can only access her shop and others by parking in front of the premises.

“I’m in favour of widening the pavement but not for the full length of the street,” she said.

Councillor Alan Smith said: “I think in the short term we need some bollards, which could be removed for deliveries. We are in exceptional times.”

Councillor Alan Kennon suggested pedestrians go one way on Station Street.

“Then you can still have disabled parking outside the Post Office,” he said.

“I like that idea,” agreed Miss Laidlow.

Councillor David Malloy questioned how this could be enforced.

Councillors voted to put all their suggestions to the county council.