Bicester Village beefs up its parking after Black Friday

The A41 roundabout near the shopping outlet
The A41 roundabout near the shopping outlet

Minute-by-minute electronic traffic updates, strict parking orders and Olympic traffic marshals are now in place at Bicester Village to avoid a repeat of Black Friday mayhem.

Christmas shoppers caused traffic chaos at the shopping outlet on Black Friday two weeks ago so Bicester Village chiefs have met with Oxfordshire County Councillors for crisis talks.

It has been decided that drivers could now face heavy fines or even watch their car being towed away if they park in residential areas or block roads.

Marshals which kept traffic order during the 2012 London Olympics will also be parachuted in and electronic signs will display updates on traffic and car park capacities.

The army of marshals and digital signs were used for the first time last weekend.

Sergeant Steve Willis said: “We saw the problems first hand on Black Friday and have listened to the feedback from the community.

“I believe that we have now got the foundations in place to tackle these issues.

“There is a complete willingness from all parties to work together to improve the congestion around Bicester Village during very busy shopping days.”

Following Tuesday’s meeting, Bicester Village has agreed to use the new traffic management company to marshal drivers every weekend and on peak days such as Boxing Day.

Residents will be given permits and drivers parking without them could face a £30 fine or be towed away.

Traffic and parking information on overhead digital displays along the M40 are also being sought,

Black Friday traffic chaos forced the shopping outlet to apologise to families living nearby and it has since begun work top repair the grass verges damaged by drivers parking on them.

By the end of next year, a new 600-space Park and Ride will be completed on the A41 near Junction 9 of the M40 and Bicester Town train station will be expanded to operate direct trains to London Marylebone.