One way pavements could be trialled in Watford as a means of increasing shoppers' fitness, safety and efficiency.

Retail flow analysts from Europe have been brought in to help solve the problem of making us all shop more logically.

If approved, the scheme will involve a single loop going up one side of High Street, around the pond and back down the other, stopping next to Cotswold Camping and going back up.

Rather than turn back for things they have forgotten, there will be crossing points where shoppers can go to the other side, then cross back just past the place they were and so rejoin the flow in  'mini-loops'.

Gunther Brass, from the Austria-based Institute of Systematic Shopping, said: "I was inspired by Watford's Ring Road, which carries traffic so effortlessly around the town centre, leading you past all the possible exits and options before eventually taking you around to Sainsbury's where you meant to go.

"Most pedestrian areas lack this formal thinking. People just go willy-nilly where they want and buy things and then go home. What kind of a system is that?"

The system is designed to reduce 'micro-collisions', known to account for 23 per cent of shopping trauma. 

It should also eliminate the embarrassment that occurs when one person facing another walks one way but then the other person does too and so the other person goes the other way but then the other person does too.

When they park their cars or get off the bus, shoppers will be prompted to enter the shops they plan to visit into an app, which will then order their trip and suggest an itinerary and tea and toilet stops, as well as points of historic interest.

The app will also suggest places people who have bought similar things have also gone, as well as diversions like cutting through M&S or Primark, and looking in Wilko to see if they've got one.

The move would also boost trade to little-visited areas of High Street, encouraging people to explore areas they rarely visit.

It has not yet been decided if the system will run clockwise or anticlockwise, although it may vary on alternate days to reduce wear and tear.

Mr Brass said the new system will also increase people's fitness by harnessing modern technology such as Fitbits.

He added: "We found that most shoppers spent an average of 2,643 steps getting where they wanted. With this system, we were able to nearly double that to 5,192.6.

"This can only increase people's cardiovascular health, reduce stress, and increase civic pride. Watford people would be fools to deny such a scheme."