BY RICHARD CORNWELL
, Felixstowe editor
Thursday, September 6, 2012
PARKING problems in Felixstowe town centre have today been dramatically reduced – thanks to a get tough policy which has seen nearly 700 motorists fined
"People are a little bit more educated about the shared space than they were before."
The clampdown on illegal parking was ordered by the resort’s Safer Neighbourhood community panel, which was fed up with drivers ignoring the restrictions in the new £2.8 million shared space shopping area scheme.
Only disabled drivers are now allowed to park in Hamilton Road between Boots and Bank Corner, but abuse by some motorists was causing frustration.
Residents angry at other drivers’ parking had been remonstrating with motorists and there were fears this could bubble over into fights.
The high number of tickets handed out shows how serious the matter is being taken – in 2011, there were just 371 tickets were issued across the whole of the town, and in 2010 only 157.
Sgt James Harper, of Felixstowe police, said: “We have issued 664 tickets under the current initiative and on many occasions we have given advice and moved people on.
“We still get a bit of ‘I didn’t know I couldn’t park here’, but it is having an effect.
“People are a little bit more educated about the shared space than they were before.”
Police community support officer Steve Butcher, who patrols the town centre, said: I think the shared space scheme is working very well.
“You will always get some people, whatever regulations you have, who will always park where they shouldn’t.”
This summer, around 60 new on-street short-stay parking spaces have been created in streets around the town centre – including Victoria Street, Brownlow Road, Ranalegh Road, and Highfield Road – to compensate for the loss of parking due to the shared space.