BUCKHURST HILL: Concern over street parking divide (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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Concern over street parking divide in Buckhurst Hill
A SECTION of a street has been overrun with cars because the road falls under the jurisdiction of two councils.
Families living in the Redbridge part of Knighton Lane in Buckhurst Hill say they have faced serious parking problems for 10 years due to the road's close proximity to a tube station.
But the problem has intensified since Essex County Council introduced restrictions in its part of the road and a nearby private hospital was recently expanded.
People say they are now unable to park outside their homes as commuters and hospital staff leave their cars in the small Redbrodge section of the street to avoid a fine, often blocking pavements and driveways.
A petition signed by households calling for action was presented to councillors at a meeting last week by mother-of-three Rachel McGowan, 40.
She said: "We have been patient for many years, but parking has become a big problem.
"My 90-year-old neighbour regularly calls the police when cars park across her drive.
"It has got so bad I can't walk my pram down the pavement and have to walk down the centre of the road, which is dangerous."
Mrs McGowan produced photographic evidence showing a number of vehicles she believes are owned by commuters and staff at Holly House Hospital in High Road squeezed in to a small area.
"It is just terrible, a real nightmare," she added.
"We tried to sell last year, but people didn't stop when they saw the state of the road."
Neighbour Beverley Swistak, 49, said: "Someone is going to get killed. We are a small voice, but want something done."
Speaking at the Area 2 meeting, council officer, Nigel Burch, promised to consult with residents on whether to introduce restrictions in the Redbridge end of the street.
But Councillor Michael Stark of Monkhams ward warned commuters will find somewhere else to park nearby.
Holly House Hospital has been asked to comment.
In July Redbridge Council agreed to introduce double yellow lines on its half of the junction of Beech Lane and High Road, Buckhurst Hill after concerns were raised about road safety.
The junction straddles Redbridge and Essex, but the county council have yet to take action on its side of the junction.
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