Bath’s clean air zone (CAZ) plans could be delayed after the council received an unprecedented number of responses to its consultation with significant numbers demanding mitigation measures for local businesses and residents.

The council said that more than 8,400 people took part in the consultation which ran for six weeks, with the number of responses on par with the responses from much larger populations in Leeds, Birmingham and Southampton, which are also proposing clean air zones.

Councillor Bob Goodman said: “All the responses have been thoughtful and they have covered a number of issues. These include concerns about rat running and parking in residential areas outside the proposed zone, suggestions for a bigger zone, and proposals for mitigations for those residents and businesses most impacted by the proposal.”

A report to council leaders notes the “unprecedented number of responses” and concludes that more time is needed to analyse the feedback and to look at possible mitigations.

Councillor Tim Warren, council leader, said: “In order to help shape our final decision we need to use these responses and secure the best package of support measures. To do this we will be taking into account people’s strongly-expressed views and concerns.”

Key themes emerging from the consultation include the boundary of the zone, impacts on specific groups of people and potential mitigations for local businesses and residents.

It came as Birmingham announced it would be levying a charge of £50 a day for non compliant HGVs once its CAZ starts in 2020.

See our CAZ landing page for more on the subject.