If residents want to properly close your road, this advice will help. It is worth it to free up the huge space outside your house to play together. Or if you don’t want to or can’t close the road think about having an informal street meet.
To temporarily close your road, one resident on behalf of the street will need to apply 3 to 12 weeks in advance for permission from your council traffic/highways department, licensing or events team.
Councils vary a lot in structure and what arrangements they require. If your council wants to charge you for a road closure or has too complex procedures then you can challenge the officers and/or your local councillors. Basically, if there is a charge of more than £50 or so then residents usually cannot afford to go ahead, so councils have to make a choice of supporting street parties in principle or not.
As you will want to write 2-3 times to every house (and any business) in the street to be involved, you are also effectively consulting them about closing the road.
Think about alternative traffic routes.
It is possible to close and move cars out from only part of a road. At least clear about 12 cars out. Residents Parking Schemes do not usually apply at the weekend.
The council (or residents) have to consult the fire, ambulance and police who formally will need a 3 metre wide gap to get down the street.
You will probably need road signs – see below.
The Council may suggest, recommend or require insurance for the road closure – see more about insurance here.
Can’t or Don’t Want to Close the Road? Have a street meet
A less organised street meet is much easier, but gives you less space.
No permission, signs, licence or money; on a pavement, parking area, garden, or green space, any time of the year.
This arrangement needs support of your neighbours. It is supported by the Government as Myths 3 and 5 on its guidance here.
Road Closure Signs
Please note that the ideas below are based on an interpretation of what the Government said to councils in 2012: ‘Neither are specific signs or other traffic management equipment required. Local authorities should act proportionately, wisely, and in the public interest – and highways law do not present any barriers to that.’
Councils have a lot of different views about this.
If you are formally closing your road, residents need to give a very clear closure to drivers and will probably need to have some ‘road closed’ and perhaps other signs. Here are some suggestions:
1. Your council may lend proper metal ones to you or tell you where you can hire them. Or you may be able to buy them locally for about £50 each.
2. You could hire or buy them from companies like this one (in central/southern England) Suntraffic.com
3. You could buy PVC banners to use as signs in daylight only. Two full size banners can be bought for about £35 from Banner Hub – see advert opposite. Or you can download our artwork to send to other printers here: Road Closed banner or Road Ahead Closed banner.