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Posted on June 28 2015 at 1:16:30

We agree wholeheartedly with our correspondent about the menace of pavement parkers. Why people decide it’s better to block the path rather the road is beyond our understanding.

Do the perpetrators have some misguided idea that it is actually the right thing to do, or is there some mystifying selfish reason?

The right thing is to park your car or van on the road where it belongs and where it will also have the added bonus of acting as an obstacle to speeding traffic – ad hoc traffic calming to make up for the lack of it around our villages.

It’s no more likely to be run into or damaged parked properly than it is half on the pavement and half in the road; in fact, it is less likely to suffer from another motorist trying, and failing, to squeeze past it, because they’ll just have to wait until there is nothing coming the other way so they can drive around it properly.

A vehicle parked on the pavement is surely prone to the odd scrape from passing prams or mobility scooters or a scratch from shopping bags swinging as pedestrians try to get by.

Is there something we’re missing here? For 60 years or more, vehicles were parked just fine on the road, yet over the past 15 years or so the number of people deciding the right thing is to park on the pavement seems to have been growing year by year.

If you are a pavement parker and know why you do it, please email us to explain why we are wrong and you are right.

Meanwhile, what can be done?

A year or two ago Alvechurch Parish Council looked at “framing and shaming” culprits by publishing photographs of poorly parked cars on social media.  That seems to have fizzled out, but for a time it did at least get people talking about the problem.

Our correspondent’s suggestion of a campaign seems on the right lines. If we can get people to wonder if they are behaving in their own interests and whether they are inconveniencing or, worse, endangering other people it will be a good start.

“Think Pedestrian!” may not be the most suitable title – we don’t want any pedestrian thinking! – but our correspondent’s last line probably sums it up best: Pavements are for People!

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