THOUSANDS of people across Leyton and Leytonstone have given their support to a series of campaigns that have sprung up in protest at proposals to make Olympic parking restrictions permanent.
Residents-only Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) permit schemes were introduced across the south of the borough during the Games to stop visitors using the area as a giant car park.
But last month Waltham Forest Council began consulting on making the changes permanent, which would result in residents having to pay between £22.50p to £120 annually - if they have one car - to park outside their homes.
With just weeks to go until the consultation closes – on Monday October 22 – campaigners have stepped up their efforts with a final push that has seen close to 4,000 people sign one petition and the establishment of several neighbourhood groups.
The council has said it will only make the restrictions permanent in areas where the majority agree.
Campaigners say they object to paying to park when there are little or no problems with lack of space in their streets and believe the council just wants to make extra money.
Petition organiser Claudette Samuel, of Melford Road in Leytonstone, said: “It's really been ramping up in the last few weeks. It's quite overwhelming.
“People feel very strongly about it. The parking restrictions had a devastating impact on local businesses during the Olympics and it's going to cost residents money at a time when many people are so cash-strapped.”
There are also widespread claims that many households have not received their consultation forms and concerns they are not translated into other languages.
Maureen Measure, 71, of Richmond Road in Leytonstone, of the 'Action Against Parking' group, said: “We've had dozens of calls from people who have received our leaflets but not the council consultation.”
Trevor Hurst, 65, of Forest Glade, of the 'Campaign Against Permit Parking Zones', added: “The forms give no real idea how much a CPZ will actually end up costing everyone, like with visitor permits.
“There's also a real chance these charges will go up in future”, he said.
The Guardian is awaiting a comment from the council.
Cabinet member for environment, Cllr Clyde Loakes, previously told the Guardian it was unlikely that any new CPZ times would be the same as during the Olympics and said the temporary restrictions had provided a unique opportunity to have a consultation.
Call Ms Samuel on 0795-7063-473 or visit www.cappz.org for more on the campaigns.