Parking Purge hits Beer trade - claim

PUBLISHED: 09:01 07 March 2009 | UPDATED: 08:42 18 June 2010

BEER traders have complained that traffic enforcers in the village are affecting business. Since East Devon District Council took over the role of enforcing parking tickets last year, business owners say over-zealous implementation in the village has led

BEER traders have complained that traffic enforcers in the village are affecting business.

Since East Devon District Council took over the role of enforcing parking tickets last year, business owners say over-zealous implementation in the village has led to a drop in business.

Gilbert Taylor, owner of Woozies Deli, said: "Every day they are here, even in the winter when it is really quiet.

"I have 85 year old women who come into buy bits and pieces and they can't carry it all to their car if it's parked far away but they (traffic officers) still tell them to move.

"It does not help businesses at all- everyone who has a shop in Beer is affected."

Belinda Greig, owner of The Village Hair Shoppe, said: "It is stopping people from doing their shopping.

"It definitely affects my customers, especially since they started charging for using the car park during the winter."

Bob Chudley, manager of Beer Village Store, said that some traders have thought about complaining to the council but they feel nothing would be done:

"Before the council took over we hardly ever saw traffic wardens but they are here a lot now.

"The worst thing is in the summer you can justify it because we get a lot of holiday makers who park anywhere and it has to be controlled, but in the winter it's just the villagers and they are still giving out tickets.

"What we would like to see is a ten minute stopping point outside all the businesses."

Audrey Tims, of Park Road, believes the village would benefit from a one way system:

"If you could go down through the village and then up through Park Road it would mean cars could park on one side of the road so there would be more spaces."

A spokesman for EDDC said: "I can confirm that Devon County Council (DCC), as Traffic Authority, is responsible for implementing traffic restrictions. EDDC's team of CEOs simply enforces them on behalf of DCC.

"Devon County Council's Traffic Order states that a vehicle may stop on a double/single yellow line for as long as is necessary to allow passengers to board or alight or to allow bulk goods to be loaded or unloaded. With the exception of vehicles displaying a valid Blue Badge no one is allowed to stop on a double yellow line or single yellow line during the prescribed hours to go 'shopping', even if this is simply for a paper and a packet of cigarettes.

"In the case of Beer, our CEOs would simply be upholding the law by issuing Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) when cars were parked illegally.

"If DCC felt that the double yellow and single yellow lines were not appropriate in the winter it could have "plated" them.

"That means that a plate is installed at the appropriate spot to state that the restriction only applies between certain dates, from May to September for example. The fact that they do not do so indicates that they have concerns about traffic flows and congestion in the village.

"Our CEOs are not working to targets, nor are they rewarded in any way for the number of PCNs they issue. Their job is to ensure that traffic flows are maintained and people do not park or stop in places that are dangerous or likely to disrupt the flow of traffic.

"Since May 2008, when the responsibilities of the CEO were transferred from the police to DCC and the District Council, 123 Penalty Charge Notices have been issued in Beer. Since 1 November, when the winter tariff started, 21 PCNs have been issued.

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