North Somerset Council slammed for ignoring Weston’s parking problems

North Somerset Parking review commitee - (from top left) Conservative Cllrs Jan Barber, Peter Crew,

North Somerset Parking review commitee - (from top left) Conservative Cllrs Jan Barber, Peter Crew, Chris Blades, David Pasley, NIgel Ashton, Kate Stowey - Credit: North Somerset Council

A six-person committee set up to review parking restrictions is comprised entirely of North Somerset councillors from wards where there are no charges for on-street parking.

Council leader Nigel Ashton chairs the committee comprised of Conservative councillors Jan Barber, Chris Blades, Peter Crew, David Pasley, and Kate Stowey.

Of the six councillors engaged in the working group only Cllr Crew represents a ward connected in the Mercury area where drivers face on-street charges.

At a meeting of Weston Town Council on Monday, in which a response to the ongoing parking review was proposed, as well as suggestions for changes to parking in Weston including reducing the cost and complexity of parking in the town and creating residents zones, North Somerset was slammed by disgruntled councillors who believe Weston is being ignored.

Cllr John Crockford-Hawley said: “Cllr Ashton seems not to understand the geography of Weston, nor indeed the concept of cross-party co-operation for this working party consists entirely of Conservatives and only one of whom represents a Weston ward and the most distant from Central and Hillside, which are quite clearly the two wards in North Somerset afflicted by parking problems.

“We suppose the argument might be put forward for its composition runs along the line of bringing a group together whose memberships represents each of the four towns and the rural area, but parking is a major issue for Weston and no more than a minor matter elsewhere in North Somerset.”

Cllr Richard Nightingale, who represents the Conservatives, said: “Over the past few weeks I have been carrying out an extensive consultation with residents on parking issues, with more than 3,000 residents participation leaflets distributed. Residents have provided me with hundreds of comments and I am pleased that the town council has agreed to submit these to North Somerset Council with my proposals.

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“It is clear to me the balance, in parking terms, is now weighted against residents in Central ward and this needs to change. North Somerset Council has the ability to do something bold to support residents and I would encourage it to do so.”