Don’t make us go back to the chaos of the past, says Milton Keynes nightclub

Pink Punter parking
Pink Punter parking

Don’t make us go back to the chaos and disarray of the past – that’s the plea from a popular nightclub that been operating a car park management system for years without planning permission.

Now however, agents for the The Pink Punter, in Watling Street, Bletchley, have lodged an application with Milton Keynes Council to give its efficient – but unapproved – way of working the official seal of approval.

In an explanatory letter to planning officials at MK Council, planning consultant Jake Collinge said: “The main purpose of the application is to vary the details of the approved parking layout so that these reflect the current situation – which provides the safest and most convenient parking, drop-off and collection arrangements.”

He adds that a reversion to the former arrangements would “in the experience of the applicants, give rise to considerable difficulties and problems and a worsening of highway and pedestrian safety conditions on Watling Street.”

The “highly organised and safe system of operation” has been developed over the last four years.

In the past, Mr Collinge says, all taxi/private hire collections and drop-offs took place on Watling Street, which resulted in “significant and chaotic highway issues and related pedestrian safety concerns.”

It also lead to noise, nuisance, and disturbance as a product of parking, queuing, loading/unloading, public disorder, highway obstruction, conflict and horn blowing, all of which also gave rise to significant safety and risk management issues.

So the night club decided to create a taxi zone where customers are dropped off and collected in the car park, which can be managed by its staff.

Mr Collinge says that the club has “worked closely with the hackney and private hire companies to ensure a change in driver operating attitudes and practices, as well as educating customers in the on-site traffic management operations – acts that have collectively delivered a much safer operation and one that is positively and actively controlled by staff members.”

He adds: “Whilst there are occasions when there is a build-up of traffic on Watling Street, this is effectively managed with the intervention of staff.

“The net result – insofar as it relates to Watling Street – is a considerable improvement on the historic situation when there was complete disarray on Watling Street and related highway and pedestrian safety issues.

“Indeed, it should be recognised that a large part of the recent success of Pink Punters is a product of the reputation of the venue for its safety and security, especially in an environment were people are becoming increasingly concerned about personal safety as a result of, amongst other things, terrorism and knife crime.”

This and other planning applications are now open for public comment, via the council’s website.

The following planning applications have also been lodged with Milton Keynes Council.

> New replacement external plant and associated plant enclosure required by internal refurbishment of the ALDI foodstore. Bradwell Common Boulevard, Bradwell Common, Milton Keynes, MK13 8BF.

> Demolition of existing building and erection of three new dwellings with associated parking and landscaping. 1 Fern Grove, Bletchley, Milton Keynes, MK2 3QF.

> Reserved matters for six dwellings (17/02672/OUT). Land At Stratford Road, Wolverton, MK12 5LX.

> Details submitted pursuant to discharge of condition 13 (Archaeological Investigation) attached to planning permission 19/00480/FUL. Little Brickhill Service Station, Watling Street, Little Brickhill, Milton Keynes, MK17 9NB.

> Detached dwelling with new pedestrian access and vehicle access. Southside Farm, Walton Road, Milton Keynes Village, Milton Keynes, MK10 9AG.

> Replacement of dwelling, demolition of existing single storey dwelling and rebuild single storey dwelling to provide full wheelchair access. Associated landscaping and external works. 11 Millhayes, Great Linford, Milton Keynes, MK14 5EP.

> Building rear second floor extension to create more bedrooms. 7 Peers Lane, Shenley Church End, Milton Keynes, MK5 6BG.

> Change of use of the reception room to front left of house into a hairdressing salon for part time use. 1 The Grove, Bletchley, Milton Keynes, MK3 6BZ.