YELLOW LINES IN FAVERSHAM TOWN CENTRE
Submission from the Faversham Society to the Public Realm Group of Faversham Town Council
There are concerns about parking around the Guildhall, and calls for yellow lines to be painted. The Faversham Society does not endorse the use of yellow lines anywhere in the town centre. In our view, they not only disfigure a heritage area, but are ineffective – people park on them regardless – and cause more problems than they solve.
The purpose of the yellow lines was to support the evening economy by allowing parking in the town centre. However, a lot of the space is being used for long-term and overnight parking, limiting the space available for customers of evening businesses – and, in particular, making it difficult for Blue Badge holders to find a space, especially in Preston Street.
It is questionable whether evening on-street parking is needed at all, except for Blue Badge holders, since the car parks are free in the evenings, have plenty of space, and are a very short distance away. Traders to whom we have spoken did not see the necessity for yellow lines, for this reason. The entire town centre could be made a no-parking zone, day and night.
However, there is a case for allowing brief parking during the daytime to enable quick shopping (eg, newsagents), visiting the bank, and dropping off and collecting bulky items. This would also benefit takeaways, daytime and evening. A reasonable period might be 20 minutes (this would tie in with a 20mph speed limit and be easy to remember). Those needing longer stays would be able to use the car parks, as now.
There is also a case for having reasonably-priced parking for business owners (eg, those who currently park around the Guildhall) in nearby car parks.
We ask the Town Council to vary the Traffic Order for the town centre (bounded by the Court Street and East Street entrances and the junction of Preston Street with Stone Street), such that either:
- The entire area would be a no-parking zone at all times.
- Parking would be permitted at all times for a maximum of 20 minutes.
In either case, Blue Badge holders would still be permitted to park for a maximum of 3 hours.
Both of these options would need only signs at the entrances. All yellow lines could be removed, as the parking regulations would be consistent throughout the area.
We also ask the council to discuss with Swale Borough Council whether reduced-cost car park permits could be made available for town centre traders.