Fears of parking chaos as number of residents-only schemes to be scrapped
MOTORISTS are bracing themselves for parking chaos in the new year, when a raft of residents-only parking schemes will be scrapped.
More than 30 streets in North East Lincolnshire will lose their schemes on January 1, because not enough residents responded to a council
As reported in yesterday's Grimsby Telegraph, only one of the existing schemes in the borough – covering Mill Road and Glebe Road in Cleethorpes – made it through to the second stage of consultation.
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And that scheme will only survive if at least 70 per cent of residents declare their intent to buy a new permit.
Residents living in the affected streets have been sent letters informing them that their schemes will be abolished.
Those who spoke to the Grimsby Telegraph yesterday said they wanted to keep residents-only parking permits – but not at the £80 cost demanded by the council.
As reported, the cost of a permit will rise 433 per cent from £15 to £80 from January – a move which provoked widespread outrage and two unsuccessful petitions from residents.
People living in the affected roads close to the centre of Grimsby fear their streets will become congested with the cars of shoppers visiting the town centre.
Michael Hugill, 59, of Earl Street, had voted to keep the scheme, but said the new cost of a permit was excessive.
He said: "People did want the scheme, but they didn't want to pay £80. I would have begrudgingly paid it. Come January we know we are going to be parking over the bridge and carting our shopping down the road because we won't be able to get our car outside the house."
His neighbour Mick Ebbs, 47, added: "We won't be able to get parked as all the shoppers will be parking down here. I have been in this street for 18 years and we have had residents-only parking all that time."
The following streets are losing residents-only parking:
Abbey Drive East.
Abbey Drive West.
Abbey Park Road.
Another neighbour Rita Tomlinson, 60, said: "It will be horrendous. We get people parking down here anyway, but now it's going to be even worse.
"I replied to the first letter saying I didn't want the parking permit, but that was because of the price. If they had left it at £15, people would have been quite happy with that."
Councillor Andrew De Freitas (Lib Dem, Park), who spoke against the price rise at last week's cabinet meeting, said: "Residents are very upset about this because it means that their streets are going to be used as a car park by people visiting the town centre. It is an intolerable situation."
He said the widespread scrapping of schemes would hit the council's finances, as more shoppers would be able to park for free in residential areas rather than using the authority's pay and display car parks.
Councillor De Freitas said he intended to appeal against cabinet's decision to impose the price rise.
He said: "Residents want the schemes to remain. The issue is the actual level of charge."
Jason Longhurst, the council's head of development, said: "I recognise that this has been a contentious issue for residents affected by the new policy. But we cannot take forward residents' parking schemes where communities don't support them.
"The feedback from our consultation is that the majority of people have not asked us to keep their scheme, so most of them will end from the beginning of next year."
Residents can apply for a residents' parking scheme for their street by completing a supplication and submitting it to the council for consideration.
However, current schemes that are to be revoked in January will not be revisited for at least two years.