Residents’ anger over Central Bedfordshire Council’s visitor parking


RESIDENTS are fuming with their council neighbours after an overflow of cars parking at its offices led to their streets becoming constantly blocked.

They claim that for years they have been plagued by people visiting Central Bedfordshire Council’s offices in Chicksands who are parking inconsiderately along the only access road to their homes.

Despite 116 people complaining however, no action has been taken on the issue.

Paula Green, 34, of Eisenhower Place, said: “Each time we complain we are told ‘sorry there was an important meeting being held today’ but this happens every day now and there is only one entrance and exit to where we live. If this road were in a town centre these vehicles would be clamped or fined. We need something to be done now before there is an accident as mothers are having to push their prams in the middle of the road as cars are parked on both sides and they have no where to go.”

Some say they also have concerns about access for emergency vehicles and the school bus which travels down Chicksands Avenue each day.

Cllr Richard Wenham, deputy executive member for corporate resources, said: “We always ask staff to work from home or from different locations if there is a meeting planned which we expect lots of people to drive to and we put up cones to prevent parking in dangerous ways.

“However in response to the concerns from residents, we are planning to start work to provide around 50 extra parking spaces as of next week. This is phase one of our plan to expand the provision within the existing car park. Phase two will require planning permission to convert part of the grassed area for up to 60 further spaces.”

“With these additional spaces we will have increased the number of spaces by around 40 per cent and we hope it will help ease congestion on busy days.”

There are currently 270 parking spaces on site at Priory House. Phase One and Two will increase this to 380. Visitors can use any of the 270 spaces (although a small number are designated for disabled persons).