Police issue over 1,100 parking tickets in Bury St Edmunds but 'it's just the tip of the iceberg'
Police have issued 1,149 fixed penalty notices this year to drivers parked illegally in the Bury St Edmunds area - but councillors say this deals with ‘just the tip of the iceberg’.
The figure was revealed to the Bury Free Press after police tweeted last Wednesday that Bury Safer Neighbourhood Team issued 26 tickets to vehicles parked in St Andrew’s Street, Bishop’s Road, Blomfield Street, Orchard Street, St John’s Street and Brentgovel Street.
However, councillors David Nettleton and Julia Wakelam said the amount was ‘just the tip of the iceberg’ and ‘isn’t even scratching the surface’ of the scale of illegal parking in Bury St Edmunds.
Both acknowledged the police were ‘doing their best’ given the demands on their resources and called on motorists to park legally and responsibly.
Cllr Wakelam said: “Well done them, I don’t want to knock their efforts but there’s just not enough police officers or PCSOs around and that’s a funding issue.
“It (illegal parking) does impact on people’s lives and I just think why are people so selfish. Why don’t people think about the impact of their actions on other people.”
She noted that the issue was a ‘nightmare’ in St John’s Street particularly near The Centre with vehicles blocking the pavement for those with pushchairs or wheelchair users.
Cllr Nettleton said: “Bury has been a wild west town for parking because people think they can park on pavements, park illegally and just get out of their car wherever it stops.”
He urged motorists to take advantage of St Andrew’s long stay car park which is free from 6pm to 8am Monday to Saturday and 4pm to 10am on Sunday.
A Suffolk Police spokesman said: “Parking is an issue that is continually raised to police and officers carry out parking enforcement wherever and whenever possible, alongside other duties and in accordance with policing priorities.”
He said they were working with the local authority to ‘provide a long term solution’ to illegal parking in Bury.
Parking enforcement responsibility was due to transfer from Suffolk police to district and borough councils next April but this has been delayed as the Department of Transport has not had time to give the go-ahead due to its work on Brexit.
Mary Evans, county council cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “We have been working closely with our Suffolk MPs to push for approval of our application for civil parking enforcement and we very much appreciate the efforts our MPs are making.”