The borough council’s cabinet member for highways Maureen Penny defended the new bike lanes.

She said: “The government’s active travel scheme encouraged us to look for ways in which to make cycling safe for those who are enjoying finding alternatives to using their cars in the wake of the Covid-19 epidemic.

“We want to encourage more people to walk and cycle where possible as it contributes significantly to a reduction in traffic congestion and is therefore cleaner to the environment. These latest measures were always intended to be a trial and the need for adjustments was anticipated. If the measures tested are not appropriate for this area then of course we need a rethink.

“Improving walking and cycling in and around the borough is a priority for us as part of our commitment towards being a zero-carbon town.

“Commercial Road is one of a number of trial schemes in place and we will be monitoring their effectiveness. Feedback is always welcome and inevitably contributes to helping us make appropriate changes and we would urge people to help us find solutions by contacting us with ideas and suggestions.”

Council leader David Renard defended the move, saying: “What we saw across the country was authorities putting things in place very quickly and then having to take them out again. So we have spent some time consulting on a number of schemes, consulting with local businesses and local residents.

“We have taken longer than some other authorities but as we saw with the reopening of the recycling centre if you take a little bit longer you quite often see a better outcome.

“The emergency active travel fund didn’t become available until we started to come out of lockdown.

"There were a number of schemes being considered but we looked at these two areas and thought these were the most beneficial. We are encouraging people to cycle and be more active which is what the money.”