Labour councillor hits out at effect of ‘punitive’ parking permit rules on Brighton school

A Labour councillor has called on the council to relax its “punitive” parking permit rules – and she won a pledge from the ruling Greens to revisit the issue.

Coombe Road Primary School

Amanda Grimshaw, who represents Moulsecoomb and Bevendean, spoke up for dozens of staff at Coombe Road Primary School.

Green councillor Amy Heley, who has responsibility for parking, offered a concession and suggested further discussion should take place with officials.

Councillor Grimshaw spoke out as Brighton and Hove City Council prepared to bring in a “light touch” parking scheme in the Coombe Road and Bear Road area at the start of December.

She told a meeting of the full council today (Thursday 22 October) that the school had just two parking permits allocated by Brighton and Hove City Council – but more than 30 staff.

They were being discouraged from using public transport and sharing cars because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Councillor Grimshaw said: “Coombe Road School and its staff are facing a difficult choice of which of their 11 teachers will be able to access on of their two allocated parking permits.

“In the middle of the covid pandemic, where using alternative public transport routes is being discouraged and car-sharing is no longer an option, surely the council could relax its punitive school permit rules to allow more of the school’s 11 teachers, three learning mentors, 10 teaching assistants, three admin staff, one welfare officer, one site manager, two cleaners and two out-of-hours club supervisors to be able to safely keep our local school open even if only to get us through the pandemic?”

Councillor Grimshaw also asked for a policy review to allow learning mentors and teaching assistants to apply for permits, too.

Councillor Heley, who chairs the council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee, said that the school would have access to four permits rather than two.

She agreed that there was an issue with the policy and invited Councillor Grimshaw to join discussions with the council’s parking team.

The new controlled parking zone – known as Zone U – has been designated after requests from residents and comes into force on Tuesday 1 December.

The problems in the Bear Road and Coombe Road area came to a head after a controlled parking zone was created in Hanover, leading to displacement.

A public consultation was held and 67 per cent of residents who responded voted for a “light touch” scheme, from 10am to 11am and 5pm to 6pm Monday to Friday.

  1. Max Reply

    Residents and school need to talk together because that’s where the conflict lies. It’s not clear, also, how many people working at the school are able to walk or cycle there.

  2. Ale Reply

    Lifting the pavement on the south side of Bear Road has always been considered a taboo. I’m sure that many people think that having a pavement which doesn’t take anywhere doesn’t make sense when there is another one on the other side of the road and such a big problem with the parking spaces.

    Lifting it and adding two pedestrian crossing (new market road and bevendean road) would solve the problems of both residents and school without affecting the pedestrians, not any green area.

    No one ever mentioned it. I believe that we should understand why and that we should consider it as an alternative.

    With the solution coming into force on the 1st December it is likely there won’t be enough parking space for the residents. But the outcome of the consultation must be respected obviously.

    Nevertheless the request of reserving 11 parking spaces seems nonsensical to me, especially if it comes from a councilor who is well aware of the issue.
    It’s not like the council can create them out of nothing.

    We need to see how the parking scheme works. Let’s give us 2-3 months. If it doesn’t work, in my opinion we should be in the position to revise the whole policy. This won’t go against the outcome of the consultation but it would simply respond to the basic principle according to which if a solution doesn’t work, it’s not a solution. Even if it’s been voted.

  3. Sabina Reply

    Dear lord🤦‍♀️, I just read a comment on this link a man saying how teachers/staff should walk or ride bikes🤨do they not realise just how much teachers and staff have to take home with them and bring back? Or that some staff do not live in the Brighton area or that they also have to do school runs themselves etc! They already park a good distance away so that the schools parents can get closer to the school and help to make the area safer on the school rush! All the while trying to manage a pandemic…. it’s about time the right people start listen and HELP our education system in any way it needs to parking being one of them. This problem is affecting staff, parents and the children. 😔 it’s shameful.

  4. Toby hamilton he/him Reply

    I suggest converting school play area into a carpark..job done everyones happy sick of moaning teachers.

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