Get­ting tough on nui­sance lor­ries

IL­LE­GAL PARK­ING: Yel­low lines and new re­stric­tions to keep roads clear overnight

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Opinion - by Sam Len­non slen­non@thek­m­group.co.uk

A LEAD­ING cam­paigner has praised new get-tough mea­sures to tackle for­eign lor­ries park­ing il­le­gally, but says more needs to be done.

Coun­cil­lors have voted through a se­ries of no-wait­ing re­stric­tions with more yel­low lines at Ash­ford’s Or­bital Park to deal with lor­ries that clog the roads there most nights.

But Ash­ford’s “lorry lady”, Mar­garet Pryke, says the re­stric­tions need to be en­forced and more park­ing spa­ces need to be found to solve the prob­lem in the longer-term. Mrs Pryke said: “I am pleased with the new re­stric­tions, but the coun­cil has to en­force them.

“All this is go­ing to be dif­fi­cult un­til some­where else is found for the lor­ries to park. At the mo­ment, many have nowhere to go.”

Lor­ries park overnight and at week­ends on the in­dus­trial es­tate be­cause the al­ter­na­tive, Ash­ford’s Water­brook truck stop, does not have enough spa­ces to cope with de­mand.

A Ken­tish Ex­press in­ves­ti­ga­tion last year re­vealed that 85 per cent of park­ing tick­ets is­sued to for­eign lor­ries at Or­bital Park were not paid. The new re­stric­tions were voted through by Ash­ford Bor­ough Coun­cil and Kent County Coun­cil’s Joint Trans­porta­tion Board.

The mea­sures are also to deal with em­ploy­ees’ cars on the es­tate which clut­ter on-street space and in­crease the risk of ac­ci­dents.

Busi­nesses on the es­tate sent let­ters sup­port­ing the plans and one firm, Or­bital Mar­ket­ing Ser­vices, handed in a 95-sig­na­ture pe­ti­tion.

Mrs Pryke has car­ried out sur­veys to dis­cover the scale of lorry park­ing prob­lems on Or­bital Park.

She found there were 758 il­le­gally parked lor­ries on the es­tate from last Novem­ber 2 to 29 and 760 from last Septem­ber 7 to 28.

What do you think? Write to Ken­tish Ex­press, 34-36 North Street, Ash­ford, Kent TN24 8JR or email ken­tish­ex­press@ thek­m­group.co.uk

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