Ottery residents could be forced to pay for parking on Tar Barrel Night

Ottery Tar Barrels 2010. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref sho 5535-45-10AW

Ottery Tar Barrels 2010. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref sho 5535-45-10AW - Credit: Archant

Some Ottery residents will be forced to fork out on parking on Tar Barrel Night and claim it back at a later date.

Due to changes in the law, Devon County Council can no longer issue temporary parking permits to residents needing to park away from home when road closures come into effect for the annual event on November 4.

This year, many of the roads into Ottery will be closed from 3.45pm to ensure the safety of the thousands of visitors which are set to descend on the town for the centuries-old event.

However this will mean some residents who return after this time will not be able to park near their homes.

Organisers have pleaded with residents and visitors not to attempt to park on the roads which need to be kept clear in case emergency vehicles need to get through.

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Instead they have been asked to park in the main car parks provided on Barrack/Exeter Road and at Ottery Football Club at the bottom of Butts road – both of which will be open from 3pm.

Any residents who have to pay a £10 parking fee will then be able to claim the money back after the event, providing they have proof of address. All the money raised from parking by visitors will go towards funding for the event.

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There will be a through-route around the town which can be used by residents but organisers have asked drivers to please only use it if they have to, to avoid blocking it in emergencies.

The route starts at Butts Hill, which this year has a dedicated taxi drop-off and collection point, and goes down the Ridgeway and Kennaway Road, which both have parking restrictions on them. It will then continue down Chineway Road, Slade Road, Longdogs lane and the Sidmouth Road, at the top of Tiphill.

An event spokeswoman said: “Our residents need to be able to get back and leave their homes without the hassle of people parking anywhere they can get a space.

“So please help us and our residents by either using the event car parks, or by parking sensibly and not blocking or hindering the roads for the emergency services and residents.

“Once you’re in, please watch the barrel movements at all times. They can and will change direction at any point. When the barrels approach please do not run away, take a step back and lean away. The barrel rollers are not aiming at you they are just trying to carry the barrel as far as they can.”

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