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Possible breakthrough in parking zone dispute

There are signs tonight of a possible breakthrough in the bitter dispute over plans for a residents parking scheme in Bristol.

Mayor George Ferguson wants to introduce the zones across large areas of the city, but has met fierce opposition from traders in the Clifton district who claim their businesses will be finished by the changes.

A meeting between protesters and council planners has just finished, with agreement that objections will be considered before any scheme is introduced.

Our Bristol correspondent Richard Payne has been following this story and looks at the background to the issue:

Campaigners say parking scheme will put off visitors

Campaigners fighting a residents' parking scheme proposed for Clifton in Bristol say they won't give up their battle. They say plans to limit parking to one hour will put off visitors.

Mayor George Ferguson says it would mean more spaces but one trader says it would put him out of business in months.

Newsagent Tony Golledge has concerns about the scheme:

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Loos staying open says Mayor

Bristol Mayor George Ferguson has decided not to close public toilets, shut museums or remove bus subsidies in his budget to be debated by senior councillors tomorrow.

They are among 20 changes made following public consultation on proposed cuts. He also plans to raise council tax by almost 2%, a move supported by two thirds of those who took part. The council needs to save £83 million over three years.

George Ferguson has made 20 changes to his budget after public consultation. Credit: ITV News West Country

Mayor plans budget changes

Bristol’s Mayor George Ferguson has announced his intentions to remove or change nearly 20 of his draft budget proposals.

It follows consultations with public as well as changes to funding projections.

The mayor will announce today he's also introducing new funds for people in hardship, supporting the living wage and increasing investment in parks and play.

It comes ahead of a full Cabinet discussion and debate on the budget tomorrow

The mayor is still planning to raise council tax by 2%, but, among other changes, there is to be a reprieve to 22 public toilets, and a change to proposals for older people.

A plan to remove subsidy to St Paul's Learning Centre will be postponed.

“This is still a very challenging budget but I am very pleased to have the chance to make changes.

We’ve had Bristol’s biggest ever budget consultation and I’ve listened to what’s been said.

Not every concern can be answered, but I’ve looked at every proposal in light of comments made.

– Bristol Mayor, George Ferguson

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Bristol budget to be unveiled by Mayor

George Ferguson speaking on ITV News West Country about the budget last November Credit: ITV News West Country

Later today, Bristol mayor George Ferguson, will reveal further details of the city's budget, and the results of a public consultation.

There was a record response to his appeal for comments with 3,800 people having their say. It followed the announcement last November there would need to be be £90 million cuts, and up to 1,000 job losses.

Council Labour Group: Bristol's future 'very bleak'

The Bristol City Council Labour Group has reacted angrily to Mayor George Ferguson's budget cuts, announced yesterday:

The Mayor once promised to protect the poor and vulnerable in this city but there's precious little sign of it with massive cuts to children's centres, older people and disabled people. [...]

This on top of a massive restructuring of the workforce and the loss of about 1000 staff - many of whom will be providing essential services. This will create a huge dent in the city the Mayor claims to be so proud of - when he appeared to appeared to promise the exact opposite by negotiating a better deal from government for Bristol. It is a very bleak future.

– Cll Ron Stone, Deputy Leader of the Labour Group, Bristol City Council

People in Bristol enjoy a car-free Sunday

People enjoying a coffee a Bristol city centre Credit: Bristol City Council
Coming up on Baldwin Street later Credit: Bristol City Council
Bristol City Council has renamed Small Street for today's Make Sundays Special as Deckchair Avenue Credit: Bristol City Council
Make Sundays Special's first dog show Credit: Bristol City Council
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