Venue: Town Hall, 4 London Street, Swaffham, PE37 7DQ
Contact: Member Services 01362 656870
To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 17 January 2011.
The minutes of the meeting held on 17 January 2011 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
It was noted that the date of 25 February was meant to read 25 January.
To receive apologies for absence.
Apologies for absence had been received from Mr P Duigan and Mrs D Irving.
Apologies had also been received from Norfolk County Council, who had been invited to send a representative to the meeting.
To note whether the Chairman proposes to accept any item as urgent business.
There was none.
Declaration of Interest
Members are asked at this stage to declare any interests that they may have in the following items on the Agenda.
The Members’ Code of Conduct requires that declarations include the nature of the interest, and whether it is a personal or prejudicial interest.
There was none.
Parking Issues in Swaffham
To receive a presentation from the Scrutiny Officer, on research and feedback thus far on parking issues in Swaffham.
The Chairman opened the meeting by explaining how the Parking Task & Finish Group began looking at all the car parks within the Breckland area. It had became apparent that Attleborough had a issue with the parking, so it had been decided to then look at all the market towns as a separate issue. The Chairman pointed out that even though this was a review of the parking, the group were not going to recommend charging and it was the last thing they wanted to do.
Teresa Smith, Committee Officer, then gave a short presentation on the background and a review of the work done so far.
Key points included:
In conclusion, she explained that the Parking Task & Finish Group was not a decision-making body. Its purpose was to pull together facts and evidence before drawing up a series of recommendations. These would then be presented to the Overview & Scrutiny Commission for consideration on the 24th March. It was therefore important that local residents were given an opportunity to air their views and experiences. Hence this public meeting and the recent local publicity.
To receive comments from the Public.
The Chairman then opened up the meeting to questions and comments from the floor. The following were raised:
The issue of a parking warden within the town was raised, and indeed if there was one. It was confirmed that Swaffham Town Council employs a warden for 2 sessions per week. This could be either a morning one day or an afternoon another day and does not include Saturdays. Swaffham Town Council reported that each time the warden goes out it’s people who work in the shops who are repeatedly getting the tickets – they are prepared to take the risk.
The Police mentioned that traffic wardens are being reduced. Breckland Council would need to provide their own enforcement for their owned car parks. The Town Clerk mentioned that there are currently two parking fine rates £12 for off-street and £30 for on-street, it would be helpful if one rate could be agreed.
A question was asked if the money from these tickets could not go into the central fund, but be allocated back to Swaffham Town Council.
Management of the Parking
It was questioned if the panel had any recommendations to put the ownership of the car parks under one authority, so that there is a coherent plan for the whole of the town. Currently there is mixed management of the parking such as the Police are responsible for Yellow lines and disabled parking; Norfolk County Council for on-street parking and Breckland Council for Car parks.
The Chairman agreed to look into this recommendation.
The issue of Disabled parking was raised and it was felt that the allocated 4 spaces in Pit Lane car park were not suitable, especially on a Saturday (Market Day) when you have to back out of the spaces which can prove awkward. It was suggested that the Disabled parking could be moved to the main market place car park.
Layout of spaces
Currently there are parallel parking spaces outside ‘Pedlars Gold’ and the question was raised as to why these spaces could not be ‘drive-in’ spaces. This would utilise the space and allow for more parking, but would be expensive to change.
The Chairman replied that at the time of the regeneration of Swaffham, it was raised that the problem was with motorised-scooters and that they couldn’t get along the path in front of Pedlars Gold.
Phillip Bray from the Iceni Partnership said he was involved at the time of the re-development of the parking in the town. They, along with the developers, tried to squeeze in as many parking spaces as possible, based on the minimum permissible dimensions.
Narborough Parish Council questioned if the Market Place car park could be made into Herringbone parking as this would make it easier for people to drive in and out of spaces.
It was pointed out that in a small space such as the market place, if this was considered it would ultimately lead to fewer spaces.
The current taxi rank ... view the full minutes text for item 12.
To agree a date and time for the next meeting.
It was agreed that the next meeting would be at 10.00am on Tuesday 8th February in the St George’s Room, Elizabeth House.