Licence to park a car anywhere!

FROM November 1, just one traffic warden will cover the entire borough of Great Yarmouth, effectively giving drivers a licence to park wherever they want.

FROM November 1, just one traffic warden will cover the entire borough of Great Yarmouth, effectively giving drivers a licence to park wherever they want.

Throughout the winter months and well into next year, streets across Yarmouth, Gorleston and Caister will be patrolled by just one traffic warden as contracts for three seasonal wardens expire on October 31.

The lack of enforcement means roads marked with double yellow lines are often filled with parked cars left by brazen motorists willing to take the risk of getting a ticket.

Hotspot areas include Gorleston High Street and King Street in Yarmouth where buses and lorries often get stuck because parked cars block the road causing long queues of traffic.

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The sole traffic warden, employed by Norfolk Constabulary, is also often called on to deal with problems in Acle, Potter Heigham and even Stalham.

The lack of enforcement has come about following the de-criminalisation of parking last year which paved the way for the borough council to take on the role of parking enforcement, funded through Norfolk County Council.

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However, due to the on-going review of local government in Norfolk - which could see the current two-tier system scrapped - its adoption has been put on hold. And the shocking revelation has prompted Labour county councillor Trevor Wainwright to raise the issue at Yarmouth's area committee meeting on Monday .

He said: “Why can't we get our own people to do this. We have double yellow lines to stop people parking but nobody patrols it - it's a complete waste of time.”

Mr Wainwright said Labour had been strongly in favour of civil parking enforcement and criticised the council for not acting quick enough to adopt the scheme. “Everything has come to a halt because of the local government review.

“People know there are no wardens in the town - that's why they park wherever they want. The double yellow lines are there for a purpose but they are just being flouted.”

Mr Wainwright said parking in Gorleston High Street had improved recently following a purge by local police but added the answer was recruiting more traffic wardens.

The residents parking zone in Yarmouth is patrolled by council wardens, funded by revenue from fines and permits.

At Monday's meeting Mr Wainwright will ask for a report on the enforcement matter and request that a representative from the police attends the next meeting so a solution can be found.

“The changes in local government, if there are any, will not come into effect until 2010. We can't wait that long before taking control of traffic wardens. Unless sorted this situation is only going to get worse.”

WHAT DO YOU THINK? Write to Letters at The Mercury, 169 King Street, Great Yarmouth NR30 2PA or email

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