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‘Park this plan’ plea

Posted on January 29 2020 at 3:49:54

Proposals for street parking restrictions close to a village railway station should be put to residents at a public meeting, say parish councillors.

Responding to requests from villagers, Alvechurch Parish Council had asked the county council’s highways department to come up with a solution to the longstanding problems along Station Road, Alvechurch.

A continuous line of vehicles parked along the roadside means there is effectively only one carriageway, with few, if any, pulling-in places for through traffic, while there are particular concerns over parking on the bend at the brow of Bear Hill.

The county council has proposed a “prohibition of waiting” order at various intervals along Station Road, to apply from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday, along the north-west side.

However, some parish councillors felt that this could simply move the problem to nearby roads, exacerbated by the continuing problems with the rail station car park, which is flooded for much of the year.

A public consultation is due to take place later in the year, following a statutory consultation period involving bodies such as the parish council and police, but Coun Andy Humphries suggested that a public meeting was needed.

He told colleagues: “The county promised a proper consultation but the statutory consultation was only a four-week period, over Christmas – they’ve tried to slip it through.

“There’s no consideration of the knock-on effects for residents. Highways didn’t even know about the issue with the station car park; it’s a bit of a shambles. We need a public meeting to get all parishioners’ views.”

Parish chairman Marc Worrall said: “We asked county to come up with a solution; it’s not perfect but they’ve done it so they should have a degree of support. If it fails, they’ll have to come back and fix it.”

He added that county councillor Charlie Hotham, who was unable to attend the January parish council meeting, was in support of the idea.

Coun John Cypher described the plan as “the lesser of two evils”, while district councillor Annette English pointed out that most residents of Station Road had private driveways.

The councillors agreed to seek an extension to the statutory period, to allow time for discussions with Coun Hotham. Coun Worrall added: “It would be remiss of the parish council to move this forward without a full public consultation – probably a public meeting.”

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