E-mail to Councillor Renshaw. Thought Localism was about Listening

Dear Councillor Renshaw

I am a Hill Road resident and have read through the officers’ recommendations for parking proposals in Haslemere. I note a significant adverse parking, traffic and safety effect in Hill Road should you proceed with the recommendations in their current form.

My understanding is that there will be significant displacement of cars into Hill Road from other areas and there is a possibility that you would be offering residents’ permits to households who do not live in our road. I’m wondering if perhaps there was a Surrey County Council hope that tucked away in your report we would not notice the 6 words suggesting residents permits for other roads? Please see attached a summary that is being distributed to households in Hill Road.

I have personally met with 15 households in the road. Two residents and I aim to communicate with all the households by the end of the week. I will give you an early indication of the unanimous opposition to these proposals based on 15 households.

  • Every household of the fifteen has stated that the town needs a multi-storey car park and this should happen before any parking measures are implemented.

 

  • You have not consulted with one resident in Hill Road. No-one was aware of your proposal for Lower Street/Shepherds Hill residents ROPs in Hill Road.

 

  • There are issues of our road being used as a rat run and this has been further exacerbated by your extension of a double yellow line in College Hill.

 

  • We request full consultation before any changes are implemented. For us full consultation will mean no zebra crossing deals, meetings with minutes and agendas, no councillor misrepresentation. (I share with you that the legacy of your deal-making with other roads leaves us all feeling rather wary.)

 

  • Each of the 15 households objects without exception to Surrey Council County imposing any Pay & Display in the town.

 

  • Your recommendations move the problem into other roads, potentially creating more problems.

 

  • Many households have a very serious concern that their objections are not cited in the officers’ report.

As a road we are in the process of making residents aware of a Hill Road residents’ association meeting next week where we will discuss these proposals. This residents’ association will include the Haslemere Preparatory School in our road.

After that meeting we will be providing you with our full response.

On a personal note, when I wrote to you on 24th January 2912 to say I thought your parking *consultation* was merely an exercise by Surrey County Council to raise revenues you replied saying I was incorrect and I would understand that was the case after the Haslemere Hall meeting on the same day. I e-mailed you again after that meeting and re-affirmed by position. You did not reply. I think it is dreadful to receive a response from an elected representative telling a resident she is incorrect. I thought Localism was about Listening.

On Monday, David Hodge – the Leader of Surrey County Council, called me to reassure me everything would be alright. I am sorry to say I just cannot see how it will be alright!

I have also shared this e-mail with the Haslemereparking.com forum of which I am a volunteer editor.

Yours sincerely

 

Áine Hall

 

address removed

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From: Áine Hall [mailto: removed] Sent: 14 March 2012 11:45 AM
To: ‘Steve Renshaw’
Cc: editor@haslemereparking.com; ‘David Hodge’; jeremy.hunt.mp@parliament.uk; eric.pickles@communities.gsi.gov.uk; hillroadresidents@gmail.com
Subject: Hill Road Residents, Haslemere – initial response

Hill Road Res 12_03_2012

1 comment for “E-mail to Councillor Renshaw. Thought Localism was about Listening

  1. Victorialeake
    15/03/2012 at 14:38

    Concerns of Lower Street/Shepherds Hill residents association regarding the current proposals by Haslemere Town Council (HTC) for Residents only parking permits (ROPS) for a select few residents.

    • First concern raised is that HTC have written a letter to David Curl, Parking Manager, dated 10th February 2012, saying problems could arise if SCC attempt to find a solution for the residents of Lower Street/Shepherds Hill. This would indicate that HTC is not using a holistic approach to the current parking crisis in Haslemere and is struggling with the infrastructure of Haslemere Town Centre. It is therefore important that a knee jerk reaction by HTC does not take place, and a holistic solution is found for the whole of Haslmere parking. If the problem is commuter parking, could a curfew of one hour not be implemented which allowed residents to park all day (permit displayed in window), but a one hour ban is put in place which would discourage commuters from parking. This would mean that the parking spaces available in the town centre are maximised.

    • Extracts from Haslemere Town Council letter sent to David Curl, SCC, 10th February 2012 (letter attached). (my response is in brackets, prefixed by Note from Leake)

    4.3 The proposals envisage multi-road zones so that a resident of any road in the zone with a permit will be able to park in a ROPS in any road in the zone. However, some residents are unhappy with this because they fear that residents of immediately neighbouring roads will “poach” the ROPS in their roads. The roads are for public use and shouldn’t be given to a select few residents. (Note from Leake:If there is enough parking for everyone, poaching wouldn’t be an issue. Accordingly, they want their road to be a zone in its own right.) This problem is particularly acute in Zone E in relation to the Chestnut Avenue/Bridge Road/Popes Mead area but is also relevant to Zone D in relation to the Courts Hill Road/Courts Mount Road/Longdene Road area. It is also going to be an issue if SCC attempts to find a solution for the residents of Lower Street and Shepherd’s Hill by finding them ROPs in other roads.

    5.5 There had been a series of meetings by the County Councillor with the residents of several roads during 2011 which were generally regarded as secret and no notes were published. This has aroused much concern from the residents of adjoining roads that both they and the impact on them had been ignored. (Note from Leake: Haslemere Town Council have done a similar thing, in sending hand delivered letters to a select few residents on the morning of the protest.) There have been many cogent and articulate demands from residents for a holistic solution to Haslemere parking problems rather than the piecemeal approach apparently adopted. As HTC’s comments on the Residents Parking Proposals indicate, it believes that at least some of these proposals can and should be implemented because the impact on adjoining roads will be very limited. However, there are other roads where further and wider consultation is needed, particularly where those roads are currently used by residents from adjoining or nearby roads without off-street parking or on-street parking (e.g. parts of Lower Street and Shepherd’s Hill).
    ?

    • The Mayor/HTC has again written (14th February), to local residents, being considered for Residents Only Parking, but did not including Lower Street/Shepherds Hill residents, extract below, my comments in red:

    In particular, please state:
    (a) if you agree with the Zones-based approach as set out above or if you want your road to be a separate Zone; and
    (b) If you agree with the proposed operating period of 0830-2000.
    Note from Leake: A holistic approach is needed, the roads are for public use and shouldn’t be given to a select few residents at the expense of solving some residents parking problems and exasperating others.)

    • We would hope that SCC would follow the precedent set in Guildford with regards to zoning:

    Precedent on parking Zones that SCC have in place in Guildford:

    Area D
    Households in Area D that do not have off-street parking facilities are entitled to
    purchase one parking permit for use in Area D. Due to the high level of demand for
    on-street parking in the town center, space is limited and the number of permits
    available for Area D is limited accordingly. There is currently a waiting list for Area D
    permits. A second permit may also be purchased, subject to availability, for use in
    the adjacent outer area.
    All Areas except Area D
    In other areas, each property can apply for up to two permits, however the eligibility
    is reduced for each off-street parking place to which the property has access. For
    example, an address where there are two vehicles and one off-street place is eligible
    for one permit. An address with two or more off-street spaces is not normally entitled
    to a permit. The rules apply to all catchment areas other than area D.

    see link below

    http://www.guildford.gov.uk/CHttpHandler.ashx?id=3137&p=0

    ?

    • There are some new develops taking place in and around Haslemere. We are expecting some new shops/restaurant s in the Brian Howard development, as well as the Subaru show room being converted into additional shops. This will put more of a squeeze on the residents living in the town centre regarding their parking requirements.

    Parking needs for Lower Street and Shepherd’s Hill

    There is a need for at least 40 parking spaces. The majority of who currently park in local roads. If all 40 cars were to park in Chestnut car park it would fill just under one third of it (40 / 134). That would have an impact on the footfall of shoppers and the vitality of Haslemere Town Centre. The majority of residents living in Shepherds Hill/Lower Street are low income earners and cannot afford to pay for a residents parking permit in one of the local car parks out right.

    It has also been suggested by HTC that Lower Street and Shepherds Hill residents park in Chestnut avenue between 16.30-09.30, but this is unrealistic as we have a large number of retirees and young families with stay at home mums so the practicalities of only having parking from 16.30 to 09.30 are unrealistic. Must the mother drag her young children out of the house early morning, put them all in car seats and then find somewhere else to park? My concern is that no proper thought has been put into this which will have a devastating effect of those less well off.

    Some ideas

    • Do a north/south/east/west divide regarding ROP’S and Lower Street/Shepherds hill are filtered into neighbouring schemes.

    • We are waiting to hear back from Jane Bowden, Waverly Borough Country side manager regarding converting the top of Shepherds Hill back into parking which could accommodate at least 20 cars for Shepherds Hill residence. There use to be more parking at the top of the green before the road was renovated in the 1970’s. Witness statement from David Simmons who’s mum use to be a councillor.

    The lay-by at the top of shepherds Hill was actually put there for our cottages which are just below the lay-by on the common and for shepherds Hill originally in the 1970s when the road was modernised. Before this time all the area that is grass now, was parking. “
    Regards David Simmons
    47 lower Street Haslemere Surrey,

    In addition we have just come back from surveying another sight on the same piece of common land, in which a number of residents, including Sandrock residence have said would make a great area for at least ANOTHER 20 cars for the Lower Streets residence. The land is flat so it wouldn’t need much doing to it, just removing some overgrown bushes. It is a disused Sand pit. If you come out of the bottom of Courts Mount road, instead of going left down Sandrock, you go diagonal and cross the road onto a old track which use to be for horse and cart, within twenty yards of getting onto the track you will need to turn to your right and there is a big clearing, and room for 20 cars. It would be great to finally give the residence of LWR/SHEPSHILL a home, and it would mean forty

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