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'It's an attack on working people' : Proposed Thames View CPZ roll out slammed by neighbours

PUBLISHED: 12:04 08 August 2019 | UPDATED: 14:05 08 August 2019

Thames ward residents urged Barking and Dagenham Council not to opt for a 24 hour, seven day a week controlled parking zone for the area. Picture: Jon King

Thames ward residents urged Barking and Dagenham Council not to opt for a 24 hour, seven day a week controlled parking zone for the area. Picture: Jon King

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A residents' association chairman has said forcing people to pay to park outside their homes is an attack on working people.

Allan Thacker, chairman of the Thames View Residents' Association, at a meeting on Tuesday, August 6. Picture: Jon KingAllan Thacker, chairman of the Thames View Residents' Association, at a meeting on Tuesday, August 6. Picture: Jon King

Allan Thacker, who chairs Thames View Residents' Association, made the claim at a meeting in Riverside House, Roxwell Road, where angry neighbours challenged council officers about the proposed roll out of controlled parking zones (CPZ).

Mr Thacker told a packed room of about 100 neighbours: "This is an attack on working people. Our leader is for inclusive growth, but we're being hit with an £18 parking charge right across the board.

"Residents are being taxed again."

He added new developments were increasing demand for parking around the estate and developers had to bear some responsibility for the problem.

People were queuing to get into the meeting on Tuesday, August 6, which was attended by Barking and Dagenham Council's head of parking, Tina Brooks, and the local authority's parking design manager, Daniel Connelly.

Ms Brooks explained the council by law could not pay for a CPZ scheme out of its general fund so had to charge to cover set up and operation costs.

The officers explained a fire at Samuel Garside House, in De Pass Gardens, in June underlined the council's duty to ensure there is enough road space to allow police, firefighters and paramedics through.

In a straw poll, only two residents voted in favour of a 24-hour CPZ operating seven days a week before the officers were urged to extend the August 7 consultation deadline.

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There were jeers when Mr Connelly explained the council had contacted about 2,000 households, of which 15 per cent had so far responded. Residents living near the A13 scoffed when told the CPZ would help tackle air pollution.

During a heated meeting, Ms Brooks threatened to leave unless residents allowed her to speak.

Cllr Cameron Geddes said: "My fear for Thames View is you're likely to face a ripple and tsunami."

He explained that plans to extend the ultra low emissions zone to neighbouring Newham in 2021 could see drivers flock to the estate to park before commuting elsewhere.

Not extending a CPZ in Thames View would leave the estate "completely unprotected", he said.

A council spokesman said: ""The CPZs are not about making money. We have to charge for permits to help us cover the set-up, maintenance and ongoing enforcement of the zones - we need to do this to ensure residents can park within their neighbourhoods.

"The Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 and the Traffic Management Act 2004 make it clear that parking schemes cannot be used as a way to raise income. Any surplus made from on street parking is ring-fenced and must be used to provide more or better parking in the borough.

"Currently the proposal is to extend the existing TV CPZ which operates within two roads within Thames View.

"We haven't made a decision on the CPZ operating times - we will consider feedback from the residents meeting and wider consultation results in the coming weeks."

He added a final decision hasn't been made on the scheme's introduction and the council makes sure developments are not given CPZ parking permits.

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