Parking on Prince’s Parade: The fiasco continues

March 28, 2018

Our Hythe Town Councillor, Ashley Tanton, writes: The proposed introduction of pay and display parking on Prince’s Parade has rightly angered a lot of people, both during the consultation stage and now as the machinery, signs and lines are installed. Let’s face it, people resent paying for parking and pay and display machines on the seafront are as welcome as a baked bean addict in a packed elevator.

Over the last few months, a number of residents have written to me and the most poignant though was a letter from a resident in a road near the seafront that set out his (justifiable) concerns that his road, and the surrounding streets, will be a magnet for seaside visitors seeking to avoid the parking charges.

I informed the resident that I have seen an assurance from SDC that they will review the situation in respect of side streets three months after the pay scheme is implemented, and that I too will actively monitor the parking in those areas and will support the residents if they choose to promote their concerns to the SDC.

The same resident then shared with me a few lines from email he had received from a Conservative member of Hythe Town Council.

“Please be assured that I did not seek election to be a Hythe Town Councillor in order to monitor car parking congestion in my ward.”

The email from that councillor ran an alarm bell for me. When I stood for election I wanted nothing more than to represent the people in the town that I grew up in: whatever their concerns, I will do my best with limited means to promote their issues.

Sadly, it seems some councillors pick and choose their topics.

Fast forward to today and we learn that SDC has caused no fewer than three companies to be employed in the task of reviewing the placement of the meters.

SDC employed Amey who employed Invvu Construction Consultants who in turn employed Bruce Woodhams Associates. The result? A recommendation that the meters be moved to the other side of the road.

Installing pay machines on the opposite side of a busy road is an accident waiting to happen and I fail to see how it can take so many consultants to make that call.

Now the residents of Shepway are faced with a bill for moving the pay machines to the promenade, next to the parking bays, AND the cost of employing yet more consultants.