Residents’ Parking Survey, a reader’s view

Dear Editor

I am appalled at the quality of the survey currently available on the Surrey County Council website.

It makes a nonsense of the ‘holistic approach’ we have all been asking for because it is entirely focused on one thing. They would have been far better off putting up a survey for everyone who lives, shops, works and, yes, commutes from Haslemere to get the ‘big picture’ rather than the narrow view that will inevitably result from the results that come out of this. Combined with this, the notices advertising the public meeting on August 9th, no-one realises they are there because they look so much like the ones they have replaced.

It is a very disappointing start to the new so-called honest and open approach from SCC.

Best wishes

 

Julianne Evans

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From: JL Nobbs [mailto: removed]

Sent: 31 July 2012 4:31 PM

To: editor@haslemereparking.com

Subject: Residents’ Parking Survey

2 comments for “Residents’ Parking Survey, a reader’s view

  1. Paul M
    01/08/2012 at 12:22

    It was never going to be easy for SCC to construct a survey, however honestly or dishonestly they were to approach it.

    It seems clear to me that the people who are most affected by on-street parking are those who are resident in streets where substantial parking by incomers occurs, and who therefore compete for parking space with those incomers. That practically means streets used by shoppers and by commuters from the railway station, and that seems to be how the list of surveyed streets has been drawn up. (Arguably it should include the lower end of Bunch Lane, but it doesn’t)

    I am not personally affected by this problem, as I live on the outskirts of town, nor do I impose it on others as I commute to the station by bicycle, but I have lived in an area of south London where commuters parked in my street. I rarely used my car during weekdays, largely because if I did, I would not be able to return even to my own street to park afterwards – I would have to wait until later in the evening and move closer once the commuters had gone home. And I found that intensely irritating.

    So I at any rate can see that residents have a legitimate interest, indeed arguably the most important interest, in how this problem is resolved.

    Having said that, the street is public property. It belongs not to the owners of the houses which front onto it, but to the County, from whose purse it is built, maintained and repaired. And – where necessary – policed. That purse is largely filled by all of the residents or businesses of the county of Surrey, in their capacity as ratepayers or council taxpayers. So we all have an interest in it and at least some rights to it.

    But how many of those who use these streets for free parking do you suppose are tax/rate payers of Surrey County? Haslemere is a mere couple of miles from the borders with Sussex and Hampshire. Should residents of the neighbouring counties, who don’t pay council tax in Surrey, have a say? The county has a statutory obligation under the Traffic Management Act to assure road-users’ progress along its roads, but that does not extend to providing them with parking, free or paid.

    And there are several other roads in Haslemere whose residents are not being invited to have a say about resident-only parking. And it is not because there is no incomer parking there either – Weydown Road, Derby Road and Bunch Lane all have quite large numbers of cars parked on weekdays. However, the style of property in those roads means that the residents do not face the same inconveniences. Their houses are detached and surrounded by gardens, and they have ample space for off-street parking under normal circumstances. Indeed, it might even be argued of Weydown road that the density of parked cars is a good thing, to calm speeds on what can at times be more of a race track than a street, where I have occasionally observed that cars travelling within the speed limit are the exception rather than the rule.

    And finally, there is a survey available for others who are not resident in the specified roads. It is an open survey, self-invited, with a large comment box in which you can always write a narrative. It is here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DNB9MY7.

  2. Editor
    01/08/2012 at 13:34

    https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DNB9MY7 is the actual survey that has been sent to the roads who are under consultation for residents’ permits. It is not an open survey. SCC website states:
    “If you live in Haslemere AND HAVE RECEIVED A LETTER ABOUT RESIDENTS PARKING, then please complete our Online Survey < https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DNB9MY7>.”

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