News and views from Paul Bull, the Labour and Co-operative Councillor for the St THOMAS Ward of Exeter City Council. Promoted by Dom Collins on behalf of Paul Bull, both of 26b, Clifton Hill, Exeter, EX1 2DJ.
Well done over recent days and weeks on the street parking issue in support of Martin Horwood’s Private Members’ Bill.
I’ve been meaning to do this for some while – update you on the current situation in Exeter.
As the appendix to your execellent guide [Policy Briefing 01/10 – Parking and the pedestrian] from February 2010 points out – pavement parking USED to be illegal under the by-law contained within the Exeter Act
Unfortunately when parking enforcement moved from police (criminal offence) to county (civil), the powers that be didn’t transfer the powers they held under Exeter Act.
Over the last 3 years, Exeter Highways & Traffic Orders Committee have been trying to rectify this situation but have been stymied by Secretary of State for Transport who had decreed that current signs on all boundaries are not sufficient to allow enforcement and has told DCC officers that repeater signs would need to be installed every 400m or so.
Even ingnoring the cost of several £100ks, this seems ot go against all other directives about reducing street clutter.
There are some roads (even in my own ward) where, if pavement parking was prevented, legal parking would make the streets too narrow for traffic to pass. We often have problems on one road, where legal parking prevents the only bus for the ward getting down the street!
So I’m keem to explore the option used by Oxford, Slough and maybe others – with a line denoting where cars can pavement park and if this line is breached, a PCN can be issued.
But for now, DCC officers are letting discussions in Parliament take their (extremely slow) course.
A message from Living Streets about Martin Horwood’s Pavement Parking Bill 2014, which is scheduled to receive it’s Second Reading on 12 September 2015.
Pavement parking is a daily obstacle course that forces parents with children, older people and those with less mobility to walk unsafely in the road. Outside London, the law on pavement parking is confusing and makes it difficult for councils to crack down on irresponsible parking.
But right now we’ve got a chance to change this. We asked MPs to submit a bill to Parliament making pavement parking illegal, and Martin Horwood MP heard us. He’s tabled a bill that would prohibit pavement parking across England and Wales.
We have a rare chance to get the law changed and protect our streets all over the country. But Martin needs the support of other MPs for the bill to be progressed.
We need to act quickly – Martin Horwood’s bill reaches its second reading this Friday 12th September. Whether it goes any further depends on MPs supporting it in Parliament.
They need to know this is important to us. They need to hear what a difference could be made to people’s lives with a proper ban on pavement parking. Contact your MP now, asking them to attend the debate and support the bill.
The frustration and the dangers caused by pavement parking aren’t the only reason to act, it’s costing us a small fortune. Between 2006-10 council’s spent £1 billion on fixing pavements and £100 million on compensation to people hurt on damaged pavements. That money could be used for real improvements to streets, not just patching up damage caused by irresponsible parking.
Let your MP know now that you need a proper law on pavement parking. Email them now.
Policy & Campaigns Coordinator, Living Streets
P.S. It’s important we act now on this rare opportunity, with the second reading just days away. Please take a moment now to contact your MP.