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Weekly Edition - Published  5 December 2015

 

Local News Report - Mobile Page

 

Government commits to review pavement parking policy

 Anne Marie Trevelyan MP, Conservative, who sponsored the bill with Guide Dogs volunteers

A bill to strengthen and clarify the law on pavement parking was withdrawn on 4 December 2015, following a commitment from Government to undertake a policy review and convene a round table in 2016, to further examine the implications of any legislative change.

The Pavement Parking Private Members’ Bill called for the law on pavement parking to be strengthened; only allowing people to park on pavements that have been specially designated to allow it, making it the exception rather than the rule.

Living Streets, the UK charity for everyday walking has worked with the charity Guide Dogs to support Simon Hoare MP in asking other MPs to back the Pavement Parking Private Members’ Bill which was due to be read on 4 December 2015.

Simon Hoare MP withdrew the bill in response to an announcement from the Government that they will undertake a policy review with stakeholders to examine the legal and financial implications of an alternative regime and the likely impact on local authorities.

Nick Thomas Symonds MP, Labour, with the Guide Dogs volunteers

Robert Goodwill MP stated that improving access for all pedestrians remains a priority for the Government. The findings of the work being undertaken will be reported at a round table which Living Streets and Guide Dogs look forward to attending.

Simon Hoare MP, said:- “Following detailed discussions, I have withdrawn the bill, following The Minister’s commitment to convene a round table and undertake a policy review. This response demonstrates the Government’s commitment to improving access for all pedestrians including disabled and vulnerable people. A government examination of the current issues gives us the best opportunity of securing Government backing for legislative change. I would like to thank my Parliamentary colleagues and the public who have supported this Bill in raising the profile of a need for a review of the current law.”

Joe Irvin, Chief Executive, Living Streets said:- “This is an important and positive step towards limiting the danger pavement parking poses to pedestrians in England and Wales. Our streets should be easy and accessible to walk on and vehicles parked on pavements cause an obstruction to all. At best, pavement parking is a nuisance and at worst, it can put people’s safety at risk by forcing them into the road. We know that pavement parking is an issue that many people care passionately about with nearly 2,500 people writing to their MP asking them to back the bill. Now it’s crucial that the Government acts promptly to see through its commitment to examine the issue properly. Along with Guide Dogs, we look forward to working with the Government on their review of pavement parking legislation and positively informing decisions next year.“

James White, Senior Campaign Manager, Guide Dogs said:- “We are pleased that the Government has recognised the scale of the problem that pavement parking causes. It is the most common street obstruction that people who are living with sight loss encounter and frequently forces people out onto the road and into oncoming traffic. For someone with sight loss this is an extremely dangerous and frightening. We look forward to working with the Government in the New Year on their review and ensuring that any work they do addresses the impact that pavement parking has on people with sight loss. We are Living Streets, the UK charity for everyday walking. We want to create a walking nation, free from congested roads and pollution, reducing the risk of preventable illness and social isolation and making walking the natural choice. We believe that a walking nation means progress for everyone. Our ambition is to get people of all generations to enjoy the benefits that this simple act brings and to ensure all our streets are fit for walking. For more than 85 years we’ve been a beacon for walking. In our early days our campaigning led to the UK’s 1st zebra crossings and speed limits. Now, our campaigns and local projects deliver real change to overcome barriers to walking and our ground breaking initiatives such as the world’s biggest Walk to School campaign encourage millions of people to walk.”

But some have pointed out that, it might not be as clear cut as some might like. Banning pavement parking might affect some businesses, who sometimes have to park on pavements to unload heavy goods, when on narrow roads. Others pointed out that more dangers are coursed on junctions by blue badge holders than parking on pavements, in some places. What are your views? We would love to know! Email us to news24@southportreporter.com and tell us what you think the rules should be!

 

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Southport Reporter (R) Bourder


  


 

 

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