A MOTORIST given a parking ticket for parking in a loading bay on a Sunday says it is no wonder many town centre businesses are closing down when shoppers are being penalised.
Jane Spencer parked, displaying a disabled blue badge as her elderly and disabled parents have trouble walking, in a loading bay in Carlisle Road thinking it was a legitimate area to park in.
When she returned to the car she discovered a penalty notice.
She said, “My father is partially blind, unable to walk without a frame or chair and even then short distances only and my mother is severely arthritic and walking with a stick currently as she is on the DGH list for her second hip replacement operation.
“I was not aware of, or saw any loading only notices and would suggest that this area’s requirement therefore for half of the road to be loading only is totally surplus to requirements. It is unacceptable the facility for disabled parking is so limited.
“With the majority of restaurants on the western side of the road why is there no disabled parking area therefore on this side?
“To expect my father with his limited walking ability and sight to even cross the road would be completely unacceptable as it would have taken him far too long to cross and would more than likely have panicked him should vehicles have appeared, wanting to get past him.
“There is no specific road crossing facility here either so they could both have only crossed during a break in traffic.”
Ms Spencer, who lives in Brodrick Road, Hampden Park, said she could see the need for a loading bay Mondays to Saturdays but not on a Sunday.
She said, “It is hardly a time when the majority of businesses would use the facility to stock up their businesses.
“To my mind this not only surplus to requirements it is an obvious ploy just to get money out of unsuspecting drivers.
“This is yet another area of town that I shall not be going back to as it is totally unsuitable therefore to take my disabled parents and the local businesses therefore will be the ones losing out.
“No surprise therefore that so many of our town centre businesses are closing or shutting up shop.”
East Sussex County Council is behind the controversial parking scheme in Eastbourne and Nick Skelton, head of transport and operational services, said, “I am sorry that Ms Spencer feels that the Parking Charge Notice should not have been issued, and we will consider her challenge in line with our policy.
“There are signs in Carlisle Road showing the loading bays are in place 24 hours a day, seven days a week and parking in loading bays is not allowed under the blue badge scheme.
“However, 87 per cent of the parking bays in Eastbourne are available, free of charge, to blue badge holders.
“Blue badge holders can park in shared use and pay and display bays as well as the 65 dedicated disabled parking bays in Eastbourne.
“They can also park on double and single yellow lines where there is no loading restriction for up to three hours.
“We follow defined procedures in considering any challenges so that every case is considered fairly and on a consistent basis. We will get in touch with Ms Spencer once we have looked into it.”