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Builders and council spark parking fury in Skipton
8:00am Thursday 22nd August 2013 in News
Residents in the Belgrave Street area of Skipton are at the end of their tether after congestion and parking problems went from bad to worse.
The roads surrounding Belle Vue Mills have been clogged up since Craven District Council moved into the building in 2011, according to locals.
Now building work on a housing scheme in Granville Street has made matters worse and residents are unable to park anywhere near their homes.
Pavements and walls have been damaged as building contractors have been breaching planning restrictions and using Belgrave Street as an access route.
Jane Houlton, from Granville Street, said the road is so narrow and there are so many cars parked on the street that construction machinery has been driving on the pavements.
“The residents do not feel safe,” she said. “The Belgrave Street residents are very angry that their warnings and objections have consistently been ignored.”
She said traffic congestion and parking in the area has been impossible for two years.
“Cars circulate constantly throughout the day, searching vainly for spare spaces, causing congestion, pollution, and frequent reversing down the narrow streets,” she said.
“Day and night, existing residents are often already unable to park within 500 metres of their homes. Female or frail people do not feel safe parking in this way at night.
“The demolition and now ground-works which are under way have brought neighbours' feelings to breaking point.”
Coun Polly English said the construction vehicles were only supposed to access the building site via Brook Street.
“I’m stunned and disappointed that the planning application team didn’t make sure they adhered to these restrictions,” she said. “All the pavements are cracked and pushed out of place and people’s walls have moved. Quite frankly the whole thing is a mess and should have been dealt with months and months ago.”
Lovell operations manager Simon Hogg said: “We are extremely sorry that our supply chain has on occasion used Belgrave Street to bring deliveries on to the site and for the damage to the footpath and a wall.
“This should not have happened and we are doing all we can to ensure that deliveries will now only come onto site by the approved route via Brook Street onto Granville Street. We clearly apologise to residents and will, of course, repair the damage caused.”
Hazel Smith, project manager at Craven District Council, said the council had made every effort to ask staff to be considerate to residents and 75 per cent of staff had bought parking permits or did not drive to work.
“We frequently remind staff to avoid the Granville Street area because of the development taking place and be considerate where they do park their cars on the public highway,” she said.
A spokeswoman for North Yorkshire County Council said the council had listened to residents’ concerns at a meeting last week and said it would address issues with the developer, and that signage is clear for delivery vehicles to the site.
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