PARENTS on the school-run, residents and businesses are all being “driven mad” by a new council street ban which they insist is making the “crazy parking situation even worse.”
They complain that the new red route in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, is failing to stop traffic chaos in their neighbourhood.
The local City Council brought in the red route two months ago in a bid to tackle parking issues around Sneyd Academy in Sneyd Green.
But officials have not installed cameras in the side streets off the busy school road to catch rule-breaking drivers – despite displaying camera warning signs.
Kev Cope, boss of Sneyd Street Tyres, said: “The new red route hasn’t stopped the parking problem, it’s just moved it up the road towards us.
“People park on my forecourt, on the road, the pavement, anywhere they can whether it’s legal or not.
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“These restriction have been in force for some weeks but it’s not made any difference. It is driving us all mad!”
Kev said the £70 fine for breaching the rule hasn’t deterred some drivers from flouting it.
He told The Sun Online: “They still stop on the red line and although traffic camera signs are up the council hasn’t installed any cameras yet so a few are risking it.”
He added that his business on Sneyd Street 100 yards from the school was forcing school run vehicles to park outside his garage or even in it, saying: “It’s made the situation worse for me and the neighbouring businesses.
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“My customers are being blocked in and cars are parked all up the street to the nearest side road, Crossway Road, and it’s very dangerous.
Kev said the school had attempted to buy a lot of land opposite to turn into a car park, stating: “But it never happened. They ran out of money and a developer bought the land for houses.
“It’s a shame as that would have been ideal and made it a lot safer around here for everyone.
“The parking situation is crazy and now it’s even worse for some of us.”
Taxi driver David Singh said: “The roads are rammed and ther’es nowhere to park properly. It’s very bad.
“At times it stops us doing our job properly.”
The cabbie, chatting while he was having a new tyre fixed, told how he regularly took parents and carers as customers to drop off and pick up their kids.
He explained: “I cant park anywhere near the school so have to park way up the road legally and wait while the adults and children have to walk back and forth.
“I think the red lines are stopping some motorists but the traffic is mad and it’s not solved the problem.
“The only solution is to have more parking places.”
The new route bans drivers from stopping on Sneyd Street and surrounding roads between 8.30am-9.30am and 2.30pm-3.30pm Monday to Friday. It has replaced double yellow lines.
.Anyone caught breaking the rules face a £70 fine.
Claire Tunstall lives in a side street near the school which has also had its double yellows replaced with a red route.
The mum of one and carer to her sister’s three children – all pupils there – said: “We’re lucky because we’re so close and can walk but when the kids were younger and I needed a double buggy it was a pain because the pavements were always blocked.”
The former care worker, now a cleaner for more child-friendly hours, said parents often sneakily parked in her little close.
“It’s always manic around school hours and there is nowhere to park. It can be quite dangerous.
“You sometimes see mobile camera vans driving up and down, and sometimes a traffic warden but I’m not sure how effective they are.”
Claire, 40, added: “I’ve got a few friends with kids at the school so I let them park on my double drive which helps them out.
“But some parents are parking across my neighbours drives or even in them without permission.”
Lollipop man Andy Hilditch believes the new red route had helped ease the problem.
He said: “It has stopped people parking right outside the school but it’s not helping local residents.
“I live in the street and now all the cars are blocking the side streets.”
The traffic crossing warden said: “It gets very busy around here and the locals are complaining and i don’t blame them.
’There’s a car park for staff but no public parking.”
Night porter Jason Marsden said: “The school needs a car park so parents can safely drop off and pick up their children.”
“It’s jam packed around here and we have to park way up the road and walk down.”
The dad-of-two, 31, said he and support worker wife Lindsey, 29, used to walk the two miles from home to school but it was too time consuming.
He said: “We now bring the car but can’t park anywhere near the school. It’s very dangerous because they’re are so many people on foot and too many cars.
“The red lines have helped a little bit but it’s early days and now all the residents are complaining that their road are being used for parking.”
Lindsey, walking to their car with her hubby and two sons Rhiley and Lewis, added: “It’s such a lovely school but we just need a car park.”
Sneyd Academy – motto “Learn, achieve, believe” – has 580 pupils aged three to 11.
Mum-of-two Jo (no surname) said: “I’m not a driver, we walk to school but I’m still affected because the cars are always pulled up on the pavement and I can’t get by with a buggy for my toddler.
“I have two boys, aged two and seven, and we have to walk on the road which is ridiculous.”
Gerald Johnson, who lives nearby, slammed the scheme “a complete and utter waste of money.”
He said: They came and burnt the yellow lines off to put the red lines down and people just treat them as yellow lines.
“The problem is there are no cameras yet and people have cottoned on. Now they ignore the signs because there is little or no enforcement.”
Sophie Cope added: “You get idiots blocking the street or parking in other people’s drives and there’s nothing you can do about that. People have got to have somewhere to park to access the school because there is nowhere.”
Trevor Roden said: “Drivers treat the red lines like they used to treat the double-yellow lines by completely disregarding them!
“There is a camera sign at the top of the street but unfortunately there is no camera that covers it.
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“Motorists have realised this and park across other people’s drives. It should have been a success but it hasn’t been.”
The council has been approached for comment.