Haringey Council ignores 90% of residents in Stroud Green parking consultation

Haringey Council has ignored the views of almost 90% residents who responded to a consultation about the removal of parking space on Woodstock Road, Stroud Green.

The controversial proposals means that a dozen parking spaces previously reserved for local residents will be turned over for the sole use of businesses.

In the initial consultation 8 of 9 local residents responding objected to the proposal. Nevertheless, Haringey Council has ignore their views and proceeded with the original proposal to statutory consultation, the final stage before implementation of any parking changes.

Commenting Councillor Ed Butcher says:

“It is outrageous that Haringey Council is completely ignoring the wishes of the local residents. This Labour-led council should stop using the word consultation because they clearly don’t know what it means. They simply don’t know how to listen”

Councillor Richard Wilson, Stroud Green councillor and Deputy Leader of Haringey Liberal Democrats, adds:

“What makes me angry about this latest parking scandal is that it has nothing to do with the real parking problems of our area.

“Hundreds of residents are crying out for action because there are severe parking problems in streets outside the CPZ parking, yet Haringey Council is steamrollering through changes elsewhere when a clear majority does not want them. There is simply no rhyme or reason.”

Stroud Green Liberal Democrats carried out a recent parking survey in the area outside that Control Parking Area that confirmed two thirds of people thought action was needed from the Haringey Council.

Parking "consultation" in Noel Park

Haringey are at it again – or more accurately – they are not at it. Yet another ‘consultation’ on parking that has failed to be properly delivered. The local Noel Park LibDems carried out a survey that shows that one in six people failed to even receive the consultation document.

Local people should have received their consultation documents in April this year asking their views on a proposed parking controlled zone for West Green and Bruce Grove. However, from the survey in Boreham Road and Westbury Avenue, carried out by local LibDem councillor Fiyaz Mughal, it is clear that many people never received the documents at all.

The LibDem survey also showed that around seventy per cent of those people who did not receive the consultation documents were against the new CPZ.

Tonight, the Council’s Labour cabinet will decide is the scheme will go ahead – which is clearly nuts – as so many people haven’t even been asked.

Good news, good news, good news

Lynne Featherstone with residents of Westpoint, Clarendon Road, celebrating their parking permit successOne – during the week my Liberal Democrat colleagues on Haringey Council got a motion through for Haringey Council to opt-in to the Sustainable Communities Act. The act in itself is really only a tool to open up future possibilities – but now we’re well on the way to being able to do that.

Two – parking permit problems for residents in Clarendon Road sorted out.

Three – Transport for London (TfL) have now promised that we will be able to use Oyster Pay As You Go on trains by September. Easier train travel, here we come!

Many thanks to everyone who backed the campaign on this – I’ve no doubt the public pressure make a big, big difference.

Parking in Highgate

That’s the subject of my latest piece for one of the local magazines:

It can be truly terrible when a CPZ (controlled parking zone) is put in near you, but you are not actually included in it – and then everyone parks in your unrestricted bit and you then can never get anywhere near your own home to park. Never mind if you have young children, babies, buggies shopping or are older and mobility challenged – you will drive round and round and end up quite a distance from your own front door.

This was the case around Claremont Road and thanks to my Liberal Democrat colleague, Cllr Lyn Weber (Crouch End ward, which covers the eastern part of Highgate) and storming local residents, Haringey Council was eventually forced into putting a new CPZ proposal out to consultation – albeit at a snail’s pace.

I went to the publication of the results – and what was crystal clear was that some in some roads, including Claremont Road, life had become a living hell. Other parts of the consultation area had no problem at all. At the public meeting, Brian Haley (Labour Executive Member who makes the decisions) wouldn’t be drawn on saying yes to those in desperate streets – but in the end that is what he will have to do.

This brings me on to a real bit of Haringey Council insanity or incompetence – or both – in terms of CPZ introduction…

You can read the full piece here.

Good news for users of Highgate Group Practice

Big issue around parking near the Highgate Group Practice but good news at the Area Assembly this week – managed to extract a public promise in blood from Brian Haley (Haringey Council Labour Member for environment) that the ten desperately needed (and long promised but not delivered) parking bays for the Highgate Group Practice would indeed finally be installed by the end of February. Hurrah!

Parking at the Highgate Group Practice

Lynne Featherstone MP at Highgate Group PracticeVisited Highgate Group Practice to look at the appalling situation they are in thanks to Haringey Council.

With the introduction of a CPZ by Haringey Council, this fantastic local practice worked to try and help Haringey Council get it right. Transport and parking is important for a GP service – because, by its very nature, many of the people coming to use the service have difficulty getting about because they are old, ill or both. To make the situation even more pressing – the site is badly served by public transport. So – there is a need for people to be able to visit by car.

Now, there is a two-hour slot in the day when there are no surgeries – and the CPZ being introduced was due to be for two hours a day. Ah – problem solved! Well you or I might think that – but whilst the surgery down time is 12:00-2:00pm, Haringey insisted that the CPZ had to be in force at 10:00-12:00 rather than 12:00-2:00pm. Aaaaargh!

Ok, said the practice – why not then introduce 12 pay and display slots in View Road, which has empty residents’ parking bays virtually all the way? Yes said the council. Ah – problem solved! Oh but no. Because Haringey Council said it would introduce the bays back in September – but still hasn’t. Now they’re promising they’ll do it in February. Let’s hope the 700 signature petition helps keep them to this promise!

Adding insult to injury – the welcome idea of introducing a bus stop opposite the practice has been a farce. They’ve sloped the road in order to bring pavement level down to where buses would load – but they have not actually introduced a bus stop. And if they did introduce the stop at the site where the pavement work has been done – it would obstruct all the traffic on this relatively heavy flow road. Nil out of ten to Transport for London. I will be raising this with Peter Hendy on Wednesday.

Ho hum!

Victory in parking signs battle

At last! Last year my colleague Martin Newton (Fortis Green ward) took up with the Department of Transport the case of some badly designed and confusing parking signs in Haringey. The Department confirmed our view – and said they were unsatisfactory. Haringey Council has now agreed to take proper action on the signs.

I hope this will finally put an end to the parking roulette residents often have to play on streets of Haringey. Parking restrictions should be about sensibly managing limited spaces rather than frankly confusing signs that can lead to people being unfairly caught out. We’ll see!

Crouch End parking chaos

Crouch End residentsMy Liberal Democrat councillor colleagues in Crouch End are having a right go at Labour Exec Member Brian Haley over the parking chaos in Crouch End. Cllr Lyn Weber organised a tour with residents for Brian – to try to finally get through to him the parking nightmare which his policies have brought about and which need to be addressed now – not some vague time in the future.

Residents form Claremont Road and Stanhope Gardens as well as several other areas bent his ear – hard – about the really severe problems they are now having as a result of Haringey Council not planning for the knock-on from other CPZs.

The proof of the pudding was on display and Cllr Haley saw vehicles reversing down roads; the difficulties posed by no parking spaces; the distressing story of a young child in pain who had to be carried to a far-off car to get to the Whittington Hospital; road rage; small business being affected by lack of access to houses, and much, much more.

Cllr Haley was short on concrete answers but has assured residents that a consultation will occur in the New Year. Fingers crossed…

Funding is also an issue. Excuses from Haringey Council over funding just won’t wash. If Haringey Labour can find £10 million to cover losses on IT upgrades, surely they can find the small amount of money needed to tackle this misery for residents?

Parking problems in Claremont Road and Stanhope Road

Lynne Featherstone MP meeting residents of Stanhope Road and Claremont Road to discuss their parking issuesReceived a late evening yesterday from Cllr Lyn Weber (Crouch End) about the residents of Claremont and Stanhope roads in the Highgate / Crouch End area who are now in a completely desperate situation re parking. What has happened is that with the advent of the Highgate Station CPZ, the Hillside CPZ (on the Islington side of the borough boundary) etc – this little enclave of roads finds itself much sought after. The still free parking there is now used by some people in the streets with a CPZ so that they don’t have to pay, seemingly all the motor repair shops who want to park the cars they are working on somewhere (and they arrive four at a time on vehicle transporters), and all the other people who want to park for the station or wherever – and these streets are the last, nearest ones left available.

The consequence is that residents cannot get to park anywhere near their houses – if they can find space at all – and now want a CPZ themselves, not surprisingly.

I have written to Haringey Council about this anyway – and am waiting for a response. But Cllr Weber has met briefly with Brian Haley and been told that there is no funding before 2008/09. It really can’t wait. And given that these schemes bring in a revenue streams for the council you would not think it beyond their wit to borrow from the 08/09 fund to bring the implementation of a CPZ forward – and then pay back out of the early proceeds?

So – Lyn had organised to meet a few of the local residents to look at the situation and decide a way forward. Even though it is mid-August and many people are away – still the parking stress was clear. And several young mothers came with their children to emphasize the fact that if you have young children, buggies, shopping etc – parking a ten minute walk from your front door is a nightmare. Another women was telling me that she was often having to park such a distance a way that she had to walk alone down a street where she was actually scared to do so alone at night.

Cllr Lyn Weber will be organising a meeting with Brian Haley as soon as possible. He had suggested October – but we want that meeting now!