[This proposal has since been amended by EHDC and the yellow lines removed. Please see the update made on 12th May]
See attached a plan and delegated decision document for a proposed single yellow line in Church Street. To summarise, it is proposed that a single yellow line will be painted from St Mary’s House (formerly Dacres) to the Old Post Office in Church Street, with a short break in between. An extension of the white zig-zag line to the school entrance is also included in the proposal.
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Clll Tony Costigan - 10th May 2021 at 2:00 pm
Please note that the name of Mr & Mrs Hayes home has been corrected on the Web Site to St Marys House, not Dacres House as stated in the document.
David Hutley - 10th May 2021 at 8:02 pm
I object to any additional road markings or signage. We live in a rural community not a town.
The only issues with parking is created by parents of the children at the school. If there is an issue surely the school can request parents to be a bit more considerate.
If we do have a yellow line is it going to be policed? Are we going to see parking tickets in Bentworth?
Cllr Tony Costigan - 10th May 2021 at 8:15 pm
Dear Mr Hutley
Please share this information with your friends and neighbours. We need all the feed back we can get to ensure we can proceed in the correct manor ..
Tim Lipscombe - 10th May 2021 at 8:47 pm
I too object, for the same reason above. It would be totally out of keeping for a rural village and would set an unwelcome precedent. I’m also unclear what problem it’s trying to solve.
Charlie Phillips - 10th May 2021 at 8:50 pm
I object to this proposal. Whilst I appreciate parking during school drop off and pick up can be problematic, yellow lines will just push the issue further along the road, already cars park almost to the bottom of the hill. This would be the start of urbanisation of our beautiful rural village.
Toby Hayes - 11th May 2021 at 8:45 am
I fully support St Mary’s School as a Bentworth institution that is as much part of village life as the pubs or the church. However, this attempt to annexe Church Close at the expense of neighbours is wrong, and should be stopped immediately.
There has always been some congestion around the school during drop-off and pick-up, and that problem has grown slowly over the years as the catchment increases and fewer pupils walk to school. However, over the past year the school has added two minibuses to the mix and teachers have apparently been instructed to park in Church Close to accommodate those buses in the playground during the day. At peak hours, any vehicles blocking access to Church Close are those of parents ignoring parking restrictions.
For the avoidance of doubt, the change, and any associated problems claimed by the school, have been entirely of the school’s making. Attempting to use delegated powers to take control of parking is a cynical and unneighbourly move.
The school has not attempted to communicate with neighbours or to express what problem, be it obstruction or safety, exists with their new parking policies. The school has also failed to state how it intends to enforce the new parking arrangements given that they have not successfully controlled parents’ parking in the past.
Church Close contains four properties without their own off-street parking, all with households including elderly or young members, and the design takes away at least two of those spaces, further amplifying parking problems cause by teachers’ vehicles and turning minibuses. Church visitors often find themselves wholly blocked from parking during school hours. The proposed reduced parking will simply force the problem further up and down Church Street.
I urge the Parish Council to consider the following points:
– Reducing available parking is not the solution to the problem of insufficient parking, and the Parish Council should submit a formal objection to the proposal.
– The school should be asked to offer alternatives such as instructing teachers to park up by the postbox, thereby freeing up Church Close.
– If the school is to block parking then a residents’ parking scheme must be offered to prioritise those who have a need to park in Church Close (noting that the associated markings would be unsightly and out of character with the village setting) with associated parking enforcement to protect the residents’ parking during peak hours.
I also note that the plan fails to acknowledge the entrance to St Mary’s House (previously Dacres), and the lines there should be removed.
Julie and Ian Hughes - 11th May 2021 at 9:37 am
We fully agree with the previous comments that yellow lines and zig zag markings would be completely out of place in our village and would push the already problematic school parking further down the lane as mentioned in the previous post. We already have to put up with inconsiderate parking by parents outside our home and have done so for many years now and suffered aggressive comments if we dare to complain. We have now resorted to permanent traffic cones in an attempt to alleviate the problem. During this past year with covid restrictions in place all parking problems with the school have all but gone away but as these restrictions are lifted we are now waiting for all the inconsiderate parking (and destroyed traffic cones) to start all over again.
Paul Mellish - 11th May 2021 at 9:57 am
We see no reason to yellow line at all in Church Street, this is a rural community and we have managed without these kind of restrictions for a very long time. To yellow line down to the Old Post Office means that residents cannot park outside their own home at any time during the day. The majority of cars parked in the Close during the day belong to the teachers. The school buses only reverse into the close at going home time to board the children, although why they cannot board them in the playground where they are parked all day is a mystery. The people who live in the Close and visitors to the Church have a right to have access all day every day to park. It should not be the business of the school to try to usurp the use of this space and bar local residents from using this area at any time. The school use the first playground as a crossing to and from the school building to the Jubilee Hall and has ample parking for staff if used sensibly. In the past we have overcome the difficulties of parents parking on and damaging verges etc. and proposed footpaths with street lighting and resolved them amicably. The village does not exist solely to service the needs of the school, there is no reason they cannot coexist in harmony with a little more consideration for the residents who actually live here – so for the School to now try to envelope the Close into their domain without any consultation is quite frankly unacceptable.
David and Sandra Hawes - 11th May 2021 at 10:03 am
Here are our views with regard to the proposed parking restrictions in and around Church Street Bentworth. The school has over the years grown into a very successful primary school. It has over 100 pupils of which I believe there are around 10 (I am happy to be corrected on this point) from the parish. It’s success has made it a school that resides in a village not a village school. It serves a growing catchment area that in itself will probably put pressure on increasing the physical size of the school in the future. I believe that the governors have lost sight of their responsibilities to the community in which the school resides which indicates a poor level of governance by not working with the community. The basic problem is that the school has grown over the years and has had to comply with criteria regarding disabled parking and the parking of school minibuses. Living opposite the school we have noted a reduction in parents parking in the street since the buses were introduced. However by creating the disabled and minibus spaces which by necessity are larger than a normal car parking space the number of teachers spaces has been reduced at the same time over the years the number of teachers has increased. The teachers and teacher assistance currently park in Church Close and down Church Street. The proposed road markings will not assist the teachers parking arrangements nor the residents. It will just push the parking further round to The Star public house, down to the intersection with Dury Lane and fill the Church Close.
The proposed markings in no way resolve the issues just pushes them round away from the school further into this residential quiet parish. Plus the lines will have to be supported by associated road signs. Such urbanisation was rejected by the parish during the Neighbourhood process and minuted. Take for instance the proposed yellow line that runs in front of Paybank House what is to stop cars parking on the other side of the road? If this happens then the verges in front of the properties will be encroached upon by larger vehicles trying to pass the parked cars. I can see from the proposal the timings when the single yellow line will come into effect but not what will happen when the school holidays take place. Will the Church Street residents be restricted to not being able to park outside of their properties during the summer months?
The drawing shown in the application is a drawing without measurements. Will the line be in front of The Old Post Office? What will happen and what provision has been made for the car owned by the residents of No. 1 Church Close?
In summary this is an an ill thought out sticking plaster solution to a problem that can and should have been resolved some time ago by the governors of the school providing sufficient parking for its teachers, assistants, governors and some parents within the school site. Not pushing the schools problem into the community where it resides.
David and Sandra Hawes.
Marcus and Kirsty Watson - 11th May 2021 at 12:32 pm
As residents of Church Close, we strongly object to this ridiculous proposal. There are enough parking issues at the moment without reducing by 2 spaces. We are wholly in agreement with all of the other objections listed above and can only say from personal experience that it is the teachers and staff of the school that are filling Church Close during the school day. Surely a weekly ride share for the teaching staff should be encouraged/enforced as a responsible solution which would also benefit the environment? i.e. they should only use their own designated car park and organise themselves with a strict ride sharing and staff parking policy. The village school should add to village life instead of trying to detract and cause upset to their neighbours by hijacking our village car parking.
Kirsty and Marcus Watson
2 Church Street
John Stockdale - 11th May 2021 at 7:42 pm
I have always supported, and still do support, the school, my own children having spent their whole primary schooldays there. But I do not think any new road markings and signage need be added, particularly in this rural community, unless there is a proven serious problem and it can also be proven that the problem would be solved by the markings and signage.
I cannot see any proof of a problem and I don’t understand what the proposal will achieve. I live quite close (but not adjacent to) the proposed markings and I spend quite a lot of time walking past the school and have not witnessed any problem where the proposed markings are. The only problem I have witnessed is when occasionally there are many cars parked further down Church Road, past where the markings are proposed. I have always accepted this, believing that there is no easy solution other than building a car park. I also think that if there is a problem there must be other ways of solving it rather that upsetting the residents and that the residents should at least be consulted.
The report states that “…the village has … large individually sited properties that have their own off-street parking.” This is not true of 3 of the 7 properties potentially affected by the proposed markings. In particular, I think it totally wrong to stop residents parking in front of 1 Church Street.
Andrew and Kate Yonge - 11th May 2021 at 10:20 pm
We agree with the comments made so far particularly the comments and objections provided by David and Sandra. This is a rural environment and yellow lines, parking signage etc is not in keeping. The school’s parking is its problem not the residents’ who would be adversely affected and the point about what would happen during school holiday times has been well made. If the minibuses are finding it hard to access the school drive, the school need to educate and inform the parents about how they can safely drop off and collect their children. The staff should be found somewhere safe to park in the school grounds if at all possible. Log jams occur with parents trying to get into the playground car park when others are trying to exit. Simply forcing them to park further away does not help either the residents or the children.
So for all these reasons we are against any yellow lines and parking restrictions being applied.
Anon - 12th May 2021 at 3:10 pm
We also live on Church Street, a short walk down from the school and strongly object to the painting of such lines. As previous residents have stated, this is not in keeping with our rural lanes and is in our opinion unnecessary urbanisation of a small village.
These lines will do no more than push the problem further down the road, at the same time not allowing residents to park outside their own homes, as well as looking unsightly.
The introduction of school minibuses and increase of size to the staff and pupils at the school should not be at the detriment to those who live directly around the school. Church Close should be primarily for it’s residents (mainly elderly people or those with young children) and also those visiting the church and its grounds as it always has been, not an overflow carpark for the school.
We strongly object to this and ask you to please not allow this to happen.
Neil Davison - 13th May 2021 at 3:50 pm
I support the valid objections already raised, and add that the proposed restriction would require parents of schoolchildren to park further down Church Street to the junction with Drury Lane and Ashley Road, creating a hazard to drivers and pedestrians at this crossroads.
For this and all the other reasons raised, I am opposed to any yellow lines and parking restrictions being applied on Church Street.