Oxford Street closed over crush fears to Christmas shoppers

Part of Oxford Street in central London was shut to traffic after fears Christmas shoppers could be crushed.

The section of the shopping street from Oxford Circus to Portman Street was closed at noon.

Westminster City Council said it made the decision as the pavements are narrower due to on-going construction work.

The road was re-opened at 20:00 GMT, but will be shut again on Sunday from noon for eight hours.

A Westminster City Council spokeswoman said this situation could see similar closures on other weekends.

Busy weekend

Currently there is major construction work near Bond Street London Underground station for Crossrail, which will run from Maidenhead in Berkshire to Brentwood in Essex and Abbey Wood in south-east London, via central London.

A Westminster City council spokeswoman said: "This was a pre-emptive decision in response to concerns about possible crushing on the pavements as a result of narrower walkways, which are being caused by ongoing construction works.

"The council is hopeful that a redesign of the building site will be possible going forward, but cannot rule out further weekend traffic closures at this stage.

"Our paramount concern is to ensure the safety of pedestrians during this busy weekend of Christmas shopping in Oxford Street."

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites