Last time I posted, I said I would henceforth confine my comments to Streetlife. However, after reading with dismay the Leatherhead Residents' Association article in the September issue of the Ashtead & Leatherhead Local, I feel I had better write here rather than to a wider public on Streetlife.
In the article, the Vice-Chairman writes: "Most responsible drivers respect the need for limiting the parking in narrow streets." That, in my opinion, is utter tosh. The Vice-Chairman obviously does not live near enough to the Station to be inconvenienced by commuters.
In July 2010 I write on the LRA Blog: "A month or so back, most residents in the road, a cul-de-sac, went for three weeks without any bin collection simply because the bin lorry was unable to squeeze between the cars parked by commuters on both sides of the road!" Inconsiderate parking had prevented access to bin lorries for three weeks and it was only the initiative of a resident putting up an unofficial "No Parking" sign that allowed the bins to be emptied. See:
At the time those posts were made, the Vice-Chairman was Chairman of the LRA. Did he not read any of those posts? Did he not understand them?
When I first moved into this cul-de-sac twenty-two years ago, most drivers did indeed respect the need for limited parking in this narrow street and parking was (almost) entirely restricted to one side. But over the past decade things changed and more and more parking took place on both sides of the road, just as it still does during the week on Park Rise, making that road difficult to drive along. It has taken a long campaign to get Surrey County Council to restrict parking in our narrow street. The Vice-Chairman asks whether we need fines to control parking. Sadly the experience of many of us is that we do.
The article seems to advocating a laissez-faire approach to on-street parking. Is this the policy of the LRA? If it is and this becomes known, then I fear the LRA will lose membership not only in my street but in the many that over the years have been plagued with parking problems. If it is not LRA policy, then what is it doing in the Ashtead & Leatherhead Local with the 'Vice Chairman of the LRA' appended to it?
The bit below the article invites people to join the LRA. Surely the LRA article ought to encouraging people to do that. Quite frankly, if I was undecided and considering joining, this article would dissuade me.