Crunch meeting to discuss student parking problems in Ipswich

Residents say they are having major problems because students from One college are parking on Sprite

Residents say they are having major problems because students from One college are parking on Sprites lane and Goldcrest Road. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

Highways chiefs, school leaders and police officers are to meet next week to discuss long-running parking problems in south west Ipswich.

The meeting has been arranged amid escalating concerns about traffic safety caused by students, parents and visitors parking near two schools.

People living near to One college have been complaining about students parking on their streets, leaving them unable to access or leave their driveways. Some claim it has prevented bin collections and could block ambulances or fire engines in an emergency.

More recently, similar problems have been reported around The Bridge School in Sprites Lane, which is a school for children with severe profound and complex learning difficulties.

One Wentworth Drive resident said: “It has been intolerable and it has become increasingly dangerous in Sprites Lane with cars, vans and busses using the parked cars like a central reservation.”

“Wentworth Drive is still the same, the road being restricted and blocked, driveways restricted and blocked.”

Various suggestions have been raised to resolve the One college problem, including the use of nearby sites for student parking.

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Christopher Hudson, who represents the Belstead Brook division at Suffolk County Council, claims “good progress” has been made on securing up to 140 parking places – 100 from the Proveeda luxury car dealership in London Road and 40 at the nearby YMCA offices.

“I’m working with residents, the county council and the school to resolve this serious and ongoing problem,” he said. “I remain confident that we can resolve this through collaboration.”

However, Mr Hudson said the issue around The Bridge School also needed a new solution, possibly involving double yellow lines, to ensure visitors to the school used its grounds, rather than Sprites Lane.

He said the combination of the two school-related issues caused “hell on wheels” for people living in the surrounding streets.

Tuesday’s meeting has been organised by a road safety officer.

“Officers from Suffolk County Council will be meeting representatives from the Bridge School and Suffolk One, as well as Suffolk police, to discuss the ongoing problems reported on Sprites Lane,” the officer said.

The meeting is taking place at 2pm on Tuesday.