Police looks to council for solution whilst council looks to police to deal with

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A local resident who has been pushing for action to be taken for months to address the ongoing problem of obstructive parking on the pavement along Cliff Road is at the end of her tether.

Jo Jeffers told wilmslow.co.uk "I am trying to fight it with the council but I am absolutely losing patience and hope.

"I just don't know what to do anymore. I feel like the community really cares, and I feel like the council really don't - but I've been at them for months now and my energy is running out.

"It's probably not really that important, yet I feel like it really is - I just have a horrible feeling something bad will happen and I'll kick myself for not doing something."

Despite hundreds of residents expressing their concern, Jo feels the chance of a solution being implemented soon is unlikely because the council seems to be looking to the police to deal with it which they say they are not in a position to do on a daily basis.

Writing to a local councillor, who Jo Jeffers has been in contact with, Simon Wallace, Design Team Leader at Cheshire East Highways said "We are aware of the obstruction issues taking place here and following a conversation with Andrew Ross and the Portfolio Holder I am going to send a letter to the Police to request enforcement takes place here. As the vehicles are causing an obstruction, the Police have the relevant powers to be able to enforce this.

"Cheshire East Highways have considered the issue previously with no suitable solution being available as placing any measures here would cause an obstruction to pedestrians. The existing double yellow lines can be enforced by the civil enforcement team or the Police can enforce the obstruction issue."

However, Sergeant Lynsey Jackson told wilmslow.co.uk this week "As a police team we are able to deal with these matters when we are on duty however to solve the problem long term we need Cheshire East Council to review the area to investigate what measures can be put in place to alleviate the situation for both residents, pedestrians and road users."

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Comments

Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Howard Piltz
Tuesday 21st July 2020 at 9:24 am
The lethargy that Cheshire East Council works astounds me and re-enforces my feeling that control of local matters need bringing back under local control.
Barbara Burgess
Tuesday 21st July 2020 at 2:05 pm
Cheshire East Highways - get a grip! Please inform how on earth a metal barrier placed at the bottom of Cliff Road (on the edge of the pavement) would obstruct pedestrians. I, and am sure many more would be interested to hear your explanation. This just seems to be more prevarication, by moving the question of illegal parking onto the police who, as I have said before have other duties to deal with
Chris Neill
Tuesday 21st July 2020 at 2:37 pm
It's a real problem in the town in general and no one will take the lead to tackle it. That's why the few anti social and illegal car parkers who are " you can't tell me what to do " kind of smugs, carry on doing it at the expense of good community and respect for others.
Tow the illegal parkers cars away and charge up to £500 to get them back.
More than covers the cost and will stop most of it recurring. Pedestrians, people with prams, and the disabled , should absolutely not have to be forced on to the road.
Jo Jeffers
Tuesday 21st July 2020 at 6:04 pm
I must add my comment re the council is at the broader CEC - Councillor Don Stockton has been sterling in his efforts
David Hoyle
Tuesday 21st July 2020 at 8:35 pm
The police have the power to have these vehicles towed away. Why do they not do it.
Mark Russell
Wednesday 22nd July 2020 at 6:56 am
All this adds to the nonsense of making Alderley edge 20 mph. If the police and council can not deal with stationary traffic, that is easy to predict, how are they going to enforce a stupid lowering of the speed limit.
Bill Bennett
Wednesday 22nd July 2020 at 9:23 am
Tow them away and charge them for doing so. The illegal parking will stop very quickly.
Charlie Cook
Wednesday 22nd July 2020 at 9:43 am
A sign declaring this a tow area would certainly have an effect. If not, towing a few away would certainly make people think twice about blatantly ignoring the double yellows.
Paul Maddock
Wednesday 22nd July 2020 at 9:50 am
There are metal barriers around much of the roundabout by the King William, and these neither obstruct pedestrians or cars. Similar barriers can and should be placed along the edge of the road at the bottom half of cliff road. My understanding of the reason they have not been is a safety issue regarding a 'run off' zone for cars in distress coming down the hill. This excuse is utterly ridiculous, however it would be very interesting to see the result of a brake failure on a car coming down the hill if the whole area was covered by parked cars. I for one would set up a deck chair to watch such a 'demolition derby'!! I wonder if maybe then the council / police would sort something out after such an incident, with a couple of dead pedestrians, a dead driver and half a dozen written off expensive 'Wilmslow Tractors'. Anybody have an old banger they no longer need cluttering up the drive.......!
Charlie Cook
Wednesday 22nd July 2020 at 10:00 am
A sign declaring this a tow area would certainly have an effect. If not, towing a few away would certainly make people think twice about blatantly ignoring the double yellows.
David Smith
Wednesday 22nd July 2020 at 10:09 am
I was in Wilmslow the other day and happened upon two 'traffic wardens' [I just forget what we call them now] and stopped to have a chat. Firstly, I THANKED them for their work in helping to maintain some aspirational order on our streets and penalise those whose selfish 'motoring' behaviour is getting up the noses of many who are more considerate. We then had a discussion about parking and I asked them for clarity on certain issues. Double yellow lines came up and in particular the fiasco that has evolved on Cliff Road down by the Carrs. It was explained to me that where double yellow lines are in the road and prohibit parking a vehicle IN THE ROAD then there also exists a prohibition on the other side of the double yellow lines extending onto the pavement as far as the boundary with private land. So we don't need any more laws or lines or anything else to allow these vehicles ON THE PAVEMENT to be penalised. The problem is amongst the Muppets than have control of our daily lives around here and can't seem to get a grip and impose the rules that apparently already exist.
This buck passing between the police/council/anyone else about who is responsible just has to stop. As I see it, if our police can think of lots of reasons to ‘look the other way’, then our traffic wardens [or CEO's as they are now called] would be admirably qualified to deal with offenders under existing regulations. I don't know what sort of shift/work pattern they have but if they are on a M-F 9-5 sort of pattern then it would be helpful if it was changed to allow a more varied pattern that would extend into the evenings or a system of flexi-working that is acceptable to the CEO's and gives broader and varied cover to deal with parking violations that don't just occur within this limited time frame.
Looking to the future, the use of drones to identify parking violations and record the offence on video might be a way forward. Drones might be used to identify violations and inform CEO's on where to go to deal with the offence.
PS: next time you pass a CEO in town - stop and thank them too for their work.
John Harries
Wednesday 22nd July 2020 at 6:06 pm
How come the long awaited and deeply debated/investigated/assessed double yellow lines on Alderley Road had immediate effect yet existing double yellow lines on The Cliff are ignored with impuninty.
Had Cheshire Police and the CEO's (Civil Enforcement Operatives...., please do let me know what this abbreviation represents because - Traffic Warden - used to do me just fine) blitzed illegal Alderley Road parkers/pavement sitters by booking them from the outset the message would have very quickly got out there.
It doesn't matter which authority enforces the law, letting 'them' get away with it simply does not send out the right message. I don't know how long it takes to give a vehicle a ticket but your leader picture captures 13 cars which appears to be no more than a hours work (halve that since the cops/CEO's seem to go about in pairs anyway); one recently reported early morning spitting incident in Handforth attracted 3/4 police officers in two cars, when they eventually turned up they were on the scene for 30-40 minutes and predictably empty handed by the end of their 'visit'.
Management of the police (err, or is that Law Enforcement Officers....) is apparently managed from Macclesfield so if they don't have time to discharge one of their less glamorous obligations to the public the 'management' is either too remote, simply inefficient or misdirecting their meagre workforce (I'll stand corrected in stating that it's apparently adequate that just 3 police officers are assigned to cover the Handforth/Wilmslow/Alderley Edge area - if you don't think this is sufficient why not write to the highly remunerrated and mainly invisible Commissioner who resides in - Warrington...).
Requote "Sergeant Lynsey Jackson told wilmslow.co.uk this week "As a police team we are able to deal with these matters when we are on duty" - double talk from sergeants now - since when do they deal with policing matters when they are NOT on duty? Straight from the horses mouth I translate that as 'we do not take that part of our duty seriously'.
CEC and Cheshire Police should be 'encouraged' to share responsibilty for this sort of thing (thus there is accountability) so the problem doesn't get batted between the two parties and we - Joe public - get some badly needed action.
PS there are already railings existing at the bottom of The Cliff hill which is where a runaway vehicle is likely to come to rest anyway - forget barriers along the pavement (it'll take ages to go through planning/authorisation) - just book the b....rs.
Laurie Atterbury
Wednesday 22nd July 2020 at 8:04 pm
I feel that I am a spectator in some sort of abdication contest between the police and CEC.
David Smith
Thursday 23rd July 2020 at 10:45 am
JOHN HARRIES: thanks for your contribution to the on-going parking fiasco with which the Muppets - mainly Cheshire East Council and police who we PAY to control our lives around here - just don’t seem to be able to get to grips. It might be partly unfair to include our local elected councillors, as they don’t receive a salary for any work, and along with several other interested groups put in much effort to make changes to out town. I do need to be convinced of their effectiveness and having a section on the Cheshire East website where they can be part of a personal blog that tell us all what they have ‘been up to’ might be a good idea - a sort of rolling, on-going election manifesto. A simpler idea for our very own Wilmslow councillors would be to have a stall on the Artisan Market and meet in person the electorate that they represent.
However, the sum of all the chunnering and explaining to the locals by all these persons/groups just doesn’t solve many issues that should be sorted in double quick time, without fuss and co-operation instead of repeatedly passing around a well-worn ‘buck’ that is becoming rather thin. A new ‘buck’ will have to be ordered soon so that the passing can carry on but guess what? None of these groups could probably even agree on who should order it, when, where from, in what colour, how big and who should pay for it!
Such is the apparent mess that has become local government in our neck of the woods. I’d be interested to know if it’s the same in other parts of the UK and if not, how come? I’ll bet you local government in Germany doesn’t work like ours and if they came to look at our system would just fall about laughing.
That’s the broader issue that needs to be faced and can probably only be achieved by a determination from the government. So our MP is a factor in all of this but there needs to be many of them to drive a change that can succeed on a national basis. We are told that more powers should be passed to the regions and possibly therefore our councils which to my mind says that those who cannot solve some of the simple issues in our daily lives will then have more power NOT to solve even more - and we the voters and council tax payers can do nothing about it. How about having ALL the senior positions in Cheshire East Council stand for election every 5 years or their financial remuneration approved by the electorate? They might then start to listen to what we want and do something about it.
CEO stands for Civil Enforcement Officer. Traffic warden was much better as that is their job - to sort our traffic problems. CEO has always stood for Chief Executive Officer - the boss of a company and nothing to do with the traffic on our roads.
It’s about time our CEO’s/TW’s had a technology upgrade. They should be able to take images of the vehicle with the time/date/GPS location tagged to identify the details of any offence. A ‘ticket’ is then printed with the essential details and applied to the vehicle. A link and reference/job number is given that allows connection to a website where full details of the offence can be seen and payment of the appropriate penalty completed. A system like this would cut down the time of dealing with offences as JOHN HARRIES correctly points out needs improving. As I mentioned, drone use could be an asset in dealing with many issues that affect our daily lives - parking issues being one of them. Others could be traffic management, a more affordable use of helicopter surveillance, search and rescue. Can you think of any more?
John Harries
Thursday 30th July 2020 at 12:23 pm
It is illegal to drive on a footpath, it is apparently not illegal to park on (obstruct) a footpath. Unless some cars have the magical powers one sees in Back to the Future or Star Wars films, they have to driven onto the footpath to park/obstruct it - ipso facto drivers (not cars) break the law doing so.
It's the will to impliment the law that is the problem and that comes down to directives/decisions by 'the Management' of our police and CEO's. I believe CEO's have some technology to back-up issueing tickets for incorrect parking or expired parking.
SO 'simples', just dish out the tickets, no if's or but's, and watch the reaction. If some people want to put up notices just use the '150 fixed penalty notices and 50 Court summons issued here in the past 6 weeks' sort of advisory - works wonders.
Vince Chadwick
Sunday 2nd August 2020 at 3:15 pm
The North Wales police do not prevaricate - they tow away!

"Snowdonia visitor's Audi towed away while they're out walking"

"The inconsiderately parked vehicle was obstructing the footway causing pedestrians to walk on the busy road."

https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/snowdonia-visitors-audi-towed-away-18701349?fbclid=IwAR3IxEGBGtZ6LLZeAa5nf2E4oGs-kccLhM0jE31Ezm0Qu6viEeBFyx68KR4

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