‘Number one issue is parking’

Parking is the 'number one' issue in Ifield, says councillor Peter Smith after resident complains about vans parking on grass verges overnight near his home. Pic Steve Robards  SR1600350 SUS-160401-164901001
Parking is the 'number one' issue in Ifield, says councillor Peter Smith after resident complains about vans parking on grass verges overnight near his home. Pic Steve Robards SR1600350 SUS-160401-164901001

A councillor has said parking is the ‘number one’ issue in Ifield after a resident raised safety concerns over vans parking on grass verges.

Councillor Peter Smith (Lab, Ifield) said a lack of parking was ‘endemic’ in Crawley.

He said: “Parking is the real problem.

“It’s the number one issue in Ifield.

“People are desperate to find places to park and are forced to go up to grass verges.”

He made the comments after Richard Symonds, of Ifield Road, called on Ifield ward councillors to take ‘effective action’ to stop grass verges being destroyed.

Mr Symonds said: “It’s now beyond a joke along Parham Road - especially at the corner of Lavingon Close.”

He said cars were being forced on to pavements after vans took ‘overnight permanent parking residence’ on the verges.

It caused ‘real practical problems’ for blind people getting to and from Ifield Parade shops.

He added: “Other than that, it is an eyesore which must be addressed.’

West Sussex County Council is Crawley’s highways authority. It can create Traffic Regulation Orders (TRO) to support any enforceable traffic or highways measures.

Cllr Smith said: “There’s only so much we can do.

“We are looking as a Labour Group at solution to parking problems.

“I know a lot of areas where we’ve been trying to get TROs and birds-mouth fencing put in.”

He added: “It’s endemic.

“I’m not giving up but just shouting at county doesn’t achieve anything - they will say they haven’t got any money.”

The county council had not made progress on TRO applications to improve parking in Ifield because it was changing the way it processed them.

Mr Smith said. “It’s very frustrating as a borough councillor to have such a poor response from county council.”