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Queues of visitors threatening to 'overwhelm' Windsor

Queues of visitors threatening to 'overwhelm' Windsor

Philip Dewey

Queues of visitors threatening to 'overwhelm' Windsor
Windsor Castle

Queues for Windsor Castle were as long as an hour and a half in the summer with the number of visitors 'overwhelming' the town.

The Royal Borough's leisure, culture, and libraries overview and scrutiny committee met on Monday to discuss the visitor experience in Windsor.

Chairman Cllr Alan Mellins (Con, Cox Green), said the coach park in Alma Road was not large enough to deal with the amount of visitors coming to the town.

He said: "In the summer we ran out of parking spaces and coaches were having to run around the town and there was chaos everywhere.

"It is true that the coach park is not large enough and the castle itself is not large enough because we had queues of an hour and a half to get in there."

Cllr Mellins, who is also a member of Tourism South East, added that the majority of coach parties came down for half a day and the queue lengths were not giving people much time to do other things in the town.

One of the suggestions to tackle the problem included introducing preferential pre-booking treatment which would provide people with queue fast-tracks for attractions such as the castle.

Vice-chairman Cllr Claire Stretton (Con, Boyn Hill) said the suggestion might not work if the castle was already full of visitors.

Cllr Mellins said: "That is an issue but it seems to me if people are free to come without us having some control, the situation is never going to stop overwhelming the town.

"One thought is to encourage people to come in the afternoons with cheaper rates for the castle or cheaper coach prices."

The committee also looked at introducing a new site for a second coach park which could be based at Royal Windsor Racecourse or the Great Park, as well as drop off points in the town centre.

The meeting took place at Maidenhead Town Hall.

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