Sidmouth mum’s disabled parking problems

Carole Read who lives opposite Victoria Hospital, is concerned that the proposed removal of public p

Carole Read who lives opposite Victoria Hospital, is concerned that the proposed removal of public parking to make way for a new entrance, will mean an increase in the number of people parking their cars outside her home. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref shs 8998-31-13AW - Credit: Archant

The mum of a disabled boy fears access to her house will get even worse if the proposed changes to parking at Sidmouth Victoria Hospital go ahead.

Carole Read wants the area to become residential parking only to battle the problem of shoppers and workers taking the places.

She said ambulances have struggled to access her May Terrace house when her son, James, seven, has suffered epileptic seizures.

“If they take away the spaces opposite it will put pressure on the parking outside my house,” said Carole.

“We are all for the hospital, it’s brilliant what they do – but this issue should be looked at separately. These aren’t people using the hospital – they are people shopping or going to work.

“It’s frustrating – and dangerous if there is an emergency.”

Three of the seven bays outside the hospital opposite are set to be moved into the hospital grounds.

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Carole said she often returns home to find her disabled parking space occupied by shoppers and workers, partly because the markings have worn down.

A spokesman said Devon County Council (DCC) raised the issue of parking with East Devon District Council when the application was being considered, and the plans were approved.

He added: “Because the hospital’s plans involve a change to the entrance, there would need to be an amendment to the current rules that allow people to park in May Terrace.

“The developer is applying now for the change, which would effectively prevent people from parking legally in three of the current spaces affected by the new plans.

“People have the right to challenge the amendment, and all responses will be considered before a decision to grant or reject the amendment is made.”

DCC considered introducing residents’ only parking in parts of the town centre, including May Terrace, some years ago, but concluded that there is not enough parking space for the proposal to be viable.

The spokesman said disabled bays can be repainted by calling customer services on 0845 155 1004, subject to eligibility for the Blue Badge.

Comments on the parking proposals can be made before August 16 by visiting

James also has autism and often refuses to walk, so his mum has to struggle home with a buggy and anything else she may be carrying if she cannot park outside.

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