Grove Park CPZ Consultation To Go Ahead
Local councillors fail in bid to block move by Cllr Mayne
The controversial proposal to consult residents in two streets of Grove Park on the issue of a CPZ in their area, will go ahead, despite an attempt by Chiswick councillors to block the move.
The ten Chiswick councillors had issued a ‘call in’ challenging the consultation proposed by Cllr Ed Mayne, the cabinet member responsible for parking, claiming that he had exceeded his authority. The councillors, led by Cllr. Sam Hearn, wanted the proposal to be sent back to Cllr Mayne for reconsideration.
But a meeting of the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee last Monday ( September 3rd) voted in favour of allowing the consultation for residents in Park and Staveley Roads, to proceed. The vote was 3-2 in favour of taking no further action, with an abstention from Chiswick councillor Felicity Barwood.
The Committee's decision paves the way for the non-statutory consultation to go ahead, a move that has been welcomed by the Park Road and Staveley Road Residents Association, which is in favour of a limited CPZ. They claim their streets are likely to be further congested as a result of the new charges for parking in nearby Chiswick House grounds which come into effect on September 12.
Hounslow Council was unable to tell us when the consultation would start.
Those who oppose the consultation claim that Grove Park has already opposed any CPZ for the area in a wide-ranging survey of over 2,000 residents last year. They believe a limited CPZ would lead to a further introduction of controlled parking in the area by stealth.
Councillor Mayne, who was criticised for not attending the Scrutiny committee meeting, defended himself in a statement.
“The Overview and Scrutiny Committee was originally going to be held in the last week of August and I rearranged my work commitments so I could attend. When the meeting was rescheduled for Monday 3 September, it became impossible for me to attend.
"Cllr Steve Curran did go to the meeting on my behalf and was fully briefed on the issue. The committee decided to take no further action, and the original decision can now be implemented. I’m pleased with that outcome.”
A view of Park Road near Chiswick House
A statement from the Grove Park Group has suggested holding a "non-partisan" meeting on the issue, which has deeply divided residents.
"The Grove Park Group stands for unity, local democracy, and a positive ambience in our area, so one of the worst aspects of Cllr Mayne's actions is its divisive effect on our local community. Many of the concerns expressed by Park and Staveley Road residents are shared with other streets, so we are working together with Cllr Sam Hearn, the Hounslow Traffic Department and local MP Mary Macleod to come up with some solutions to those concerns.
"We don’t believe that a CPZ is the only answer, and in fact 81 Park Road residents (from the street’s 165 homes) signed a petition against one little more than a year ago, but we are open-minded, so all solutions should be explored.
"We do think that the whole area’s needs should be considered, which is sometimes tricky and might involve compromise, but we think that Grove Park is special enough to warrant the extra effort. The Grove Park Group would be happy to host a non-partisan meeting to encourage better dialogue, engender creative solutions and show that our community will not be divided by the self interest of those who would seek to undermine that."
They also state that the decision to re-consult residents in two streets ignores the wishes of the majority of residents in the ward and these have been outlined in previous CPZ consultations and a petition. Furthermore, they say, the proposed consultation also ignores a recent unanimous decision of the CAC not to re-consult.
The car-park charges agreed for Chiswick House car-park will apply between 8.00 am to 6.00 pm, Mondays to Sunday (including Bank Holidays) from 12th September 2012. It will cost £1 for up to two hours, £4 for up to four hours and £15 above six hours. A proposal to sell season tickets for the park was not adopted.
September 7, 2012