Sunday, 24 April 2011

Bank holiday Parking Scam!

Cross posted from Charlie Farrow
I've just passed words (not very polite ones in my case) with a Parking Warden who is ticketing cars in the residents parking bay in Berkeley Road. I did the same with the Wardeness on Good Friday too!

Quite apart from the iniquity of paying this bloke £30 an hour (yes that's right!) to do this task on a Bank Holiday, who for heavens' sake do his council masters think they are serving by ticketing today in this quiet residential street?

Certainly not us residents. The only possible benefit to us from this unwanted scheme is to deter shopppers and office workers from hogging the spaces so that we can park near our homes.

But it's Easter Sunday! All offices are shut. Even that temple to capitalism, Tesco, is shut today! The only cars in Berkeley Road belong to the people who live here and to our friends and loved ones who have come to share a festival / holy day with us.

The scheme was introduced against the wishes of Berkeley Roaders who held a public meeting at the Library attended by Council Officers. We agreed unanimously to reject the project. But it was imposed on us anyway!

It's not hard to see why. From the Council's point of view it's a top idea. It is not about easing congestion or making life better for the residents. It is a straight forward revenue earner. It forces the office workers and shoppers into paying in the Town Centre Car Parks, thereby paying for itself. On top of this the penalty tickets are extra earners and the punitive late payement levies and collection charges are obscene.

So today we're paying extortionate overtime to a man to do something we didn't want in the first place, and that is totally inappropriate today, in particular, since there is no congestion to be eased!

Craven Road

It is a fallacy to call it a Residents Parking Scheme, since permits are being sold to people who are not even resident in the ward, as evidenced by the painting out of the word RESIDENT. So clearly even the Council sees that the scheme is not for the residents' benefit.

As the permit scheme is not applied to all roads in the ward, it can be therefore nothing other a local tax selectively and unfairly applied to some resident car users but not to all.

As Apolitical candidates we are pledging:
  • to issue all qualifying residents with two free car permits, as the scheme is self-liquifying from car park revenues;

  • to put a stop to the blatant revenue grabbing persecution of our guests on Sundays and Bank Holidays;

  • and to end this shameful squandering of over-time money on an inappropriate task.
And if Berkeley Roaders decide again to scrap the scheme we promise to abide by their wishes.

Any way, back to my Easter turkey-lurkey, I need to get the veg on!


A Northern Bloke said...

I worked in Traffic Management at various councils for 25 years. Most of the time we avoided Residents parking schemes like the plague because of the inherent difficulties they bring with them. This one sounds typical although why a scheme was implemented in the face of comprehensive opposition beats me. It's usually a case of residents initiating the process but then being disappointed at what the highway authority (ie the council) can and cannot actually offer due to legal constraints.

A Northern Bloke said...

P.S. Whoever drafted the Order was being a bit sly. You can include exceptions to allow for a number of things and I would be surprised if they were legally constrained to have an Order that applied on bank holidays.

Charlie said...

Sly is a good word. Clearly today's activity is well sly!

Tony Vickers said...

I note that you picture is not of Berkeley Road but of Craven Road. The word "RESIDENTS" is painted out where the review of the scheme made a stretch of road available to non-residents part of the time, as is the case here. Surveys showed more space than residents needed *here* (not in Berkeley Rd), so day-time parking for commuters and/or short term shoppers is allowed.

Charlie said...

Don't be daft Tony the same word is painted out in Berkeley Road but not so photogenically lumpily nor so obviously un-parked upon as Craven Road. However I was pointing out that the problem is not just Berkeley Road-centric.

Here's the Berkeley Road version

Mat Waddy said...

this was the survey conducted by local experts at Newbury College
so how could it be wrong?