PEOPLE in Melksham and the surrounding villages are being urged to complete a short questionnaire about how they travel to and through the town.

It forms the first stage in a five-month exercise by Melksham Town Council called Priority for People: Melksham 2021 to better understand how people and goods move around.

The council will then use the survey results to explore long-term options for change as well as short-term fixes.

Melksham mayor Cllr Jon Hubbard said: “Everyone has a view on traffic, on improving air quality, making it easier and safer to get around, on public transport, on trucks and delivery vehicles.

"Last year, we adopted a report ‘Melksham Town 2020-2036’ which looked ahead to some of the challenges and opportunities we face in the years ahead, all within the framework of the climate emergency.

“Priority for People is an important first step in putting meat on the bones of that report – and in ensuring as far as possible that we reflect people’s concerns and ambitions.”

David McKnight, the town council's economic development manager, said: "As we emerge from the pandemic, it’s increasingly clear that ‘returning to normal’ is not really an option.

"In part this is a result of how our habits over the past 16 months have changed, triggered by successive lockdowns.

"The bigger-picture issues of climate and environmental change, increased population, technology, a greater focus on leisure, increased demand for health and social care provision, heightened inequality – all require rapid and substantial change across society if they are to be confronted effectively.

"The way goods and people move around is key to how we shape a future that meets these challenges."

"We all want our town centres to be more attractive, healthy and people-friendly. Most of us would like to see less traffic and more pedestrian space – but when we use our car, we expect to be able to park without driving endless circuits around the town.

"Many people are walking and cycling more and as a society we have become more appreciative and protective of our fresh air and open spaces.

"Yet, we have also become more reliant on online shopping and home deliveries. These challenges often overlap – so it is crucial that they are carefully tackled."

Residents are being urged to complete a few questions on their day-to-day travels, whether by car, bike, bus or on foot.

In August, the evidence will be analysed and the results published for further public input and discussion.

While funded and managed by Melksham Town Council, views and ideas are also being sought from residents in surrounding communities.

The survey closes on Sunday, July 25 and can be found at

Paper copies will also be made available in the town's retail outlets, pubs and public buildings, including Melksham Town Hall.

For more information, contact David McKnight, Economic Development Manager at Melksham Town Council.