Business leaders in Liverpool have criticised a proposal from the council that streets around the city’s “gay quarter” be closed to traffic after 10pm.

The chance of emulating Manchester’s Canal St area are in jeapordy, they claimed.

Plans to enhance the quarter by using raised bollards to close off Stanley Street, Cumberland Street and Eberle Street from six in the evening went for consultation with the council earlier this year.

Previous estimates for the completion of the new quarter came to £500,000, which supporters claim will attract more businesses to invest in the area and create a “café culture.”

The council’s response was that they would consider closing roads after 10pm.

Councillor Steve Radford, a supporter of the new gay quarter, said:

“It will be a waste of public money to close these streets so late at night. Most of the businesses consulted have asked why it has not already happened.

“The officers appear to have come out of this consultation and ignored the view of the majority in favour of the objections of very few people.”

Cllr Radford is leader of the Liberal party group and Co-Chair of Liverpool Gay Business Association, which backs the plans.

Cllr Peter Millea, executive member for development and regeneration, told the Liverpool Daily Post:

“I must make clear that all this does is regulate the traffic coming in and out. The bars and cafes will still have to apply for pavement licences as well.

“Hopefully, once these procedures have taken place we will be in a position where people can go out and have a drink in Stanley Street and not run the risk of getting knocked down.”