THE issue of parked cars on residential streets in Skipton has been a bone of contention for many years.

Workers, put off by the cost of the town's pay and display car parks, leave their cars on streets within walking distance of the town centre.

That, not surprisingly, is unpopular with residents.

North Yorkshire County Council set up a task group in January to review its residents' parking policy, which prevents schemes being introduced in areas where at least half of the properties have access to off-street parking.

The move was partly prompted by complaints from residents living on the Regents' Estate – just a stone's throw away from the head office of Skipton Building Society, whose 1,300 employee have to share just over 500 parking spaces.

Whatever the task group recommended, there were bound to be dissenters.

In fact, it has taken a middle line. It says the current off-street parking criteria should continue to apply, but there should be an exceptions policy, with certain safeguards, in areas where there is ongoing parking by non-residents, close to major employment sites, working beyond the normal office hours.

It recognises a balance has to be struck and decisions need to be based on actual parking needs rather than a desire for exclusivity by those living nearby.

Just because a road is littered with parked cars is not a reason alone to allow a residents' parking scheme.

But it is not just Regents where there are parking problems.

North Yorkshire is already looking at putting yellow lines in Gargrave Road near Keelham Farm Shop, residents of Broughton Road have called on commuters not to park in places where it restricts visibility, and those living in Middletown have voiced concerns about the growing number of cars on their streets.

There is no easy solution, but much could be achieved if we all showed some consideration for others.