‘You don’t have a right to park outside your house’ says Stevenage councillor

Councillor Michelle Gardner.

Councillor Michelle Gardner. - Credit: Archant

Drivers in Stevenage no longer have ‘the right’ to park outside their houses, says a borough councillor.

Michelle Gardner made the point to angry protesters who had raised objections about lack of parking in Brick Kiln Road at a Stevenage Borough Council planning and development committee meeting.

She said: “No one has the right to park outside their house, I don’t get to park outside my house.”

Neighbours who live in the cul-de-sac next to Bide A While, previously a residential home for the elderly, said emergency vehicles might not be able to get down the road if the property is allowed to be converted into general rented accommodation, because new tenants would bring cars with them.

They also objected to not being able to park outside their own homes and said the council had not given them enough time to look at revised plans.

The application, which was passed after being recommended by officers, has room for four off-road parking spaces but the building will be home to eight people.

A Stevenage Borough Council spokeswoman said: “Stevenage – like most other British towns – was not built to accommodate the number of vehicles that households now own.

Most Read

“We know that some residential streets are congested and in areas we’ve been able to increase parking for residents by creating additional space. We also have more 580 garages available to let across the town that residents can rent to park their cars.”

Tests were carried out by the council to make sure ambulances and fire engines could make their way down the street, which is between the railway track and Fairview Road.

Herts Fire & Rescue Service said the problem was the same all over the town but that they could get engines down the street if needed.

But Mick Gorham, who lives in Brick Kiln Road, said: “The decision typified how out of touch the people in power are with the good honest people of Brick Kiln Road that have a vested interest in improving their lives.”

The planning application stated 10 people would live in the property but that was reduced to eight after initially being turned down.