OBSTRUCTIVE car parking outside primary schools across Barnsley has resulted in a councillor beginning a campaign in a bid to find a solution alongside a local primary’s headteacher.
Coun Steve Hunt, who represents the Darton East ward, has raised his concerns over ‘obstructive’ parking outside Darton Primary School, as parents have been parking on double yellow lines.
Although it’s a borough-wide issue during term time, Coun Hunt has called on Barnsley Council to create more parking nearby schools in order to alleviate the issues.
Jo Lancett, Darton Primary’s headteacher, and Nigel Gair, chair of governors, have issued a letter of concern to the council to back Coun Hunt’s quest.
He told the Chronicle: “This issue has been brought to my attention by worried parents and residents.
“The school is also concerned about the situation which arises on school days as parents, grandparents and carers take their children to and pick up from the school. “In front of the school is a road where double yellow lines are painted to try and prevent parking around the school and provide a safe environment for all.
“Unfortunately, there is no traffic regulation order in place to enforce the double yellow lines and this is well known to those who disobey them.
“So each day cars park on these lines and there are other instances of inconsiderate and obstructive parking.
“If the council put in place a traffic regulation order and also put in place better parking arrangements for local residents, this would improve the situation around the school but it could move the problems elsewhere.”
The letter, addressed to Sarah Norman, chief executive at the council, calls for more parking spaces for drivers, as many people cannot find alternate means of travel. Particular recent flare-up points have been raised at Barugh Green Primary, Higham Common Road, and Royston St John’s, Vicarage Lane.
“Schools are trying to encourage more parents to walk to school with their children but this has had limited success,” Coun Hunt added.
“There are many reasons why parents drive their children to school. I support the council’s efforts to encourage more active travel in the borough.
“These initiatives will take time to come to fruition and in the meantime we anticipate that the situation around the school will get worse.
“Land that parents use to park their cars on Station Road, Darton, is subject to a planning application to build 12 houses on.
“If this planning application is approved it is likely that even more parents will contribute to the problems being experienced outside the school.
“We are calling on the council to look at options to significantly improve the safety for all affected.
“More available space for car parking in close proximity to the school would certainly help the current situation.”
Coun Chris Lamb, cabinet spokesperson for place, environment and transport, said: “Parking restrictions are in place outside our schools to maintain visibility for both drivers and pedestrians.
“Parents who park irresponsibly need to be aware these restrictions exist to ensure their children’s safety.
“We’d encourage parents, where they can, to travel actively to school by walking, cycling or scooting, and where this isn’t possible to park appropriately and safely.”