Council’s under fire over parking permit scheme

220812   Parking on clarendon road, linlithgow.
220812 Parking on clarendon road, linlithgow.

AN EXPERIMENTAL parking scheme will come into force at Clarendon this October despite protests from 
residents who say it makes no sense.

Waiting restrictions coupled with a residential parking scheme will be introduced on Clarendon Road and Crescent in Linlithgow this October as West Lothian Council’s response to six years of complaints that rail commuters are clogging up the area during the day.

The 12-month experimental scheme will introduce controlled hours from 10am-11am on Monday to Friday, when only permit holders will be allowed to park in the targeted Clarendon zone. Parking permits for residents allowing them to park 
during these times will cost £20 a year.

But some local residents vigorously oppose the scheme, which is the first of its kind in West Lothian.

Barry Jareckyj who stays on Manse Road said: “There was a problem with commuter car parking here two or three years ago but the new car park at the cricket club built last year has helped dramatically, and has eased it.”

He added that he believed the complainants were in the minority of those living in the area.

Bill Purnell, of Clarendon Crescent, objected at Tuesday’s council meeting and said: “There is not a problem in the Clarendon Estate. Having done surveys myself over the last few months I found at least 90 per cent of vehicles on each occasion were either that of a resident or of a contractor undertaking work for a resident.

“Personally I feel the meeting had decided what was to happen before either objector spoke as no questions were asked.”

He added that council 
officers did not have figures to back up the scheme or detail how they would assess its success or failure.

He added: “The police are on record as saying there is not a problem in Clarendon, so why is the council trying to solve a problem that the 
‘experts’ say is not there?”

But this week West Lothian Council said that, after lengthy consultation, the trial scheme would start in October and reports will be submitted every four months.

Linlithgow councillor Tom Conn said: “We would emphasise that the parking scheme is a trial and will be closely monitored on a regular basis. We anticipate the proposals will prevent drivers from leaving their vehicles all day as they would need to move them between the restricted hours.

“We know that the move will not suit everyone. However, consultation with local people has indicated support for measures to tackle indiscriminate commuter parking in the area.”

He added the council had reached a stage where they had to choose a way 
forward to meet the needs of the community and it will be reassessed after 12 months.”