Anger as Residents Parking plan shelved

A long-awaited Residents’ Parking scheme in Keynsham is likely to be scrapped by Council chiefs, Conservative councillors in the area have learned. The news has sparked anger from local residents and councillors who had campaigned for the scheme’s introduction.

Residents were consulted on a proposed Residents Parking Zone for the Dapps Hill area of the town in February and it had been expected that the scheme would be introduced this year, the first of its kind in the town.

It was hoped that such a scheme would address long-standing residential parking problems in the town, where local people often complain of difficulties in finding parking spaces near their homes due to office workers using residential roads for parking.

However, when the Liberal Democrats took over the running of B&NES Council with Labour’s support following May’s local elections, the authority put all new residential parking schemes on hold. Now, following inquiries made by Keynsham South Councillor Alan Hale about the delays, the council says it is no longer likely to progress a Residents’ Parking scheme in Keynsham. The Council has said it is instead looking at implementing more parking restrictions such as yellow lines in the area.

Conservative councillors representing the area have expressed their anger at the news and the lack of information given to residents about the future of the plans.

Councillor Alan Hale (Cons, Keynsham South) said:

“The fact that the Labour-backed Lib Dem Council looks set to shelve this long-anticipated scheme shows just how little they are concerned with the needs of Keynsham.

“The problem of residential parking has been a major issue in the area since I was first elected in 2007 and there have been petitions, residents’ surveys, and a Council consultation on the matter. From previous findings there appears to be significant support for a Resident’s Parking Zone here and local people had expected the scheme to be progressed this autumn.”

Fellow Keynsham South councillor Kate Simmons (Cons) added:

“Residents often even fear moving their cars here as they might not be able to return. It would be disappointing if no scheme goes ahead, as by publishing the Traffic Regulation Order the Council indicated to residents that it would be. I do not think that simply putting place more general parking restrictions would help the situation as they would have a penalising effect on the very residents who are suffering now. We will be urging the Lib Dem Cabinet to consider this further and take action on this important local issue.”