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Action to be taken on Haverhill High Street soon

Action against illegal parking in Haverhill. 

Police stop drivers on Haverhill High Street in an attempt to curb the number of people using the high street as a car park.

Action against illegal parking in Haverhill. Police stop drivers on Haverhill High Street in an attempt to curb the number of people using the high street as a car park.

Action will soon be taken to stop illegal use of Haverhill High Street so the issue will not be on town council agendas come ‘2075’.

Action will soon be taken to stop illegal use of Haverhill High Street so the issue will not be on town council agendas come ‘2075’.

Short term action such as towing cars, clamping, enforcing a barrier and making the High Street pay and display will be discussed at the next Haverhill Town Council meeting.

Gordon Cox addressed councillors in the public forum of last Tuesday’s (October 29) meeting at the arts centre, suggesting parking on the High Street is made pay and display seven days a week, from 8am to 6pm, at a cost of £4.10 per hour.

However, Cllr Clive Turner said: “It’s the blue badge holders who are significant contributors to the problem and they do not have to pay anyway so it would have very little impact on that.”

Mr Cox said he supported ‘24/7 pedestrianisation’ of the High Street, but that this could be a ‘short term solution’.

Debating how to see through pedestrianisation later in the meeting, town clerk Will Austin said he had been told by Christopher Gurteen that he would still expect some vehicle access to the front of the Chauntry Mills site even if a hole were to be made in the back wall to allow cars to enter there.

He said Mr Gurteen wants to lower the listing status of some parts of the site to enable the family to sell it and move to the edge of town, but until the site is sold the Gurteens would oppose pedestrianisation of the whole High Street.

Cllr Maureen Byrne said Mr Gurteen had approached her and said ‘I’m not holding it up.

‘I don’t want to be known in this town as the person that’s holding up pedestrianisation’.

Cllr Brian Hawes said: “Is this going to appear on the agenda every month now for the next ten years?

“We’ve been talking about the High Street since 1975 and we will be talking about it until 2075.”

“I would like to start discussion about enforcement, about towing people away about clamping people.”

Cllr Turner said: “Enough is enough.

“We need to start taking small steps to keep things going.

“Whether it is a speed hump, a barrier or a 15 limit we need to be stepping towards where we want to be as every journey starts with a single step.

Cllr Turner suggested helping Mr Gurteen lower the listing status to expedite the selling process and get him on board with pedestrianisation.

Cllr Byrne vehemently opposed that, saying: “If he’s saying that if he gets it de-listed he still won’t back pedestrianisation then tell him to take a run and jump.

“Let us work on stuff we have some control over.

“Let him do it.

“Why are we doing it?

“It’s not going to solve the problem as he still has to sell the bloody building after that.”

Councillors agreed to address solutions including Mr Cox’s proposals at the next meeting, along with looking into supporting de-listing Chauntry Mill, getting financial support from St Edmundsbury Borough and Suffolk County councils to uphold existing laws, and to see what options are available.

Joint funding a PCSO to ticket cars is an option not favoured by the town council.

De-criminalising parking would allow a traffic warden to issue tickets, though Suffolk County Council has resisted this due to the costs incurred.

A barrier could be operated to enforce current laws, though someone would need to enforce this.

Dealing with illegal use of the High Street has been a police priority since June 2011.

For all the latest news see Thursday’s (November 15) Echo.

 

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