Councillor Kris Brown, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Merseyside’s Police and Crime Commissioner has joined with his Woolton Ward colleagues, Councillor Malcolm Kelly and Councillor Barbara Mace in calling on the government to change the law to give local authorities new powers against rogue pavement parkers.
In a letter to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Rt Hon. Robert Jenrick MP, councillors Brown, Kelly and Mace highlight the fact that London has the ability to act whilst the rest of the country does not.
The letter reads:
Dear Secretary of State,
Pavement parking outside London
The Highway Code states that you must not park partially or wholly on the pavement. However this only applies to London. Elsewhere in the country the Highway Code states that you should not park partially and wholly on the pavement.
As we are sure you hear over and over again from councillors across the country, parking problems often blight town centres and residential communities alike.
In the area we represent in South Liverpool many of its roads and side streets can be found in the Domesday book. Therefore, you can imagine that many places are a tight fit for vehicles that have increased existentially in number in the last few decades.
As a result our streets become clogged with cars which pose a hazard to wheelchair users, prams and general pedestrians.
You will be aware that in 2019 the House of Commons Transport Select Committee criticised government for inaction on pavement parking outside London and in its report said “Pavement parking puts pedestrians in danger when they are forced to move into the road to get around a vehicle or where there are trip hazards due to damage to the pavement.”
This experience is too often the case for not only our constituents but for those around Liverpool and the wider country.
We are urging you and the government to consider a change in the law, like that of London, to give local authorities and the Police the power to take action outside of the capital.
We look forward to your reply.
Councillor Kris Brown Councillor Malcolm Kelly Councillor Barbara Mace
Councillors for Woolton Ward, Liverpool City Council
Councillor Kris Brown said: “In many circumstances drivers park responsibly and allow sufficient room for pedestrians to pass, without damaging the pavement or grass verge.
“However, in too many circumstances in the area we represent, around the city of Liverpool and the wider country, we’re seeing irresponsible parking on pavements that often cause the elderly, disabled, those with pushchairs and others to take alternative routes which include dangerously walking into the road.
“Pavement parking has been banned in London since the 1970s. It’s time the government allowed local authorities in the rest of the country to do the same.
“Exemptions should be allowed at the local authorities’ discretion but we simply can’t go on the way we are at the moment. Irresponsible pavement parking is a cause of social isolation and loneliness for people who feel unable to safely leave their homes or are physically prevented from doing so.”