Bexhill and Battle MP backs call from Parliament to end ‘Wild West of Parking’ chaos

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Bexhill’s MP, Huw Merriman, has welcomed a call from Parliament to end the current parking chaos in the town and across parts of Rother.

The recommendation was part of a wide-ranging report urging the Government to act to stop anti-social parking.

Mr Merriman, a member of the Transport Select Committee, invited the cross-party group of MPs to visit Bexhill as part of their inquiry and evidence gathering.

He said he wanted to use Bexhill as an example of where pavement parking causes immense difficulty for people with pushchairs and a wide range of mobility issues.

The MPs met with impacted residents from across East Sussex. During their visit, they were shocked to observe not only pavement parking but general parking chaos which the chairman of the Select Committee, Lilian Greenwood MP, called the ‘Wild West of Parking’ when speaking in Parliament.

The committee’s report, which will go to the Government for response, calls for a nationwide ban on pavement parking, with exceptions for suitable residential streets. It also calls for applications to transfer parking enforcement from the police to local authorities, one of which applies to Rother, to be dealt with as a matter of priority.

Mr Merriman said: “The inquiry into pavement parking is of critical local interest to me due the lack of any parking enforcement in Bexhill and Battle.

“This has resulted in some hugely inconsiderate and dangerous parking which the Transport Select Committee witnessed during their visit to Bexhill in July.

“On that day we saw parking across pavements and driveways, illegal parking in disabled bays and loading bays, vans parked across the lowered curbs and cars parked in the middle of the road.

“All of this causes great difficulty and risks for able-bodied residents but especially those with mobility issues or young children.

“Our report calls for pavement parking to be banned across England to ensure the rights of pedestrians to use our streets safely are protected. Where necessary for access, pavement parking can be tightly regulated based 
on local requirements.

“The report also recommends areas like Rother which want to introduce civil parking enforcement to deal with anti-social parking behaviour, such as pavement parking, are dealt with immediately by the Department for Transport.

“I have written to the Roads Minister to highlight this recommendation to ensure we get traffic wardens in the towns and villages across Rother.

“I hope to see parking law and order restored to our streets in the first half of next year.”

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