Grass verges ‘being trashed’

jpco-29-1-14 Residents angry at grass verges destruction in Punch Copse Road, Three Bridges  (Pic by Jon Rigby)

jpco-29-1-14 Residents angry at grass verges destruction in Punch Copse Road, Three Bridges (Pic by Jon Rigby)

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Residents have voiced frustration at motorists who cause damage to grass verges near their homes.

Michael Barratt, 72, of Punch Copse Road, Three Bridges, said his neighbourhood was “being trashed” by vehicles parking on the grass.

He said: “I think it’s deplorable. If you go and knowingly trash somebody’s neighbourhood that’s criminal damage.

“County and town hall councils have been passing the buck between themselves for years with the consequence in most instances it is not unlawful for individuals to vandalise kerbs and grass verges.”

Elsie Upfold, 79, also of Punch Copse Road, said her husband broke his knee because cars left slippery mud on pathways near their home.

She said: “The road is so narrow and as they turn into Punch Copse Road, the wheels go up over the path and break the curb stones.

“We are very careful now because we are in our 80s.

“I get upset about it because you can see what a mess it is.”

Frank Halliday, 74, has led a campaign for four years to introduce a by-law to make parking on grass verges an offence.

He reported 18-inch deep track marks in Brookside, Three Bridges, where he lives, to Crawley Borough Council on Monday (January 27).

He said: “What the council’s done so far is really nibbling at the edges of a very large problem.

“We as a community group try to do a lot of things to improve the neighbourhood - it’s just a bit upsetting when you see some good work undone by a small minority of people who don’t seem to care.”

A borough council spokesman said borough and county councils, and the Three Bridges Forum, had been working together to resolve issues in the neighbourhood.

The local authorities met to address some of the forum’s top ten issues.

The borough council identified areas for paving in a verge in Crossways Close to allow access for larger vehicles.

The planned works were part of an ongoing consultation process with residents.

A West Sussex County Council spokesman said: “The key to note is that we work with the local community to find a mutually acceptable solution as one size doesn’t fit all.”

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