Villagers of Witchford near Ely baffled by double yellow ‘stop start’ lines – Cambs News

Villagers who successfully campaigned to get yellow lines on a number of roads have been dismayed by the potholes caused by workmen having to drive around parked cars to get the job done. The visual outcome, in Witchford near Ely, has become a major talking point, although the county council says it will return to plug the gaps.

A county council spokesperson said: “Installing new yellow lines often requires us to make repeat visits due to parked cars. We will return as soon as possible to complete this work.”

But not all residents are happy with yellow lines, even though a village poll supported the proposals.

County Council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines.  They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding.  PHOTO: Terry Harris Witchford, Ely Saturday April 20, 2024.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines. They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding. PHOTO: Terry Harris
Witchford, Ely Saturday 20 April 2024.

A 75-year-old told the BBC: “The lines suddenly appeared out of nowhere.

“Cars have parked in the gaps between the double yellow lights.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines.  They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding.  PHOTO: Terry Harris Witchford, Ely Saturday April 20, 2024.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines. They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding. PHOTO: Terry Harris
Witchford, Ely Saturday 20 April 2024.

“It’s ridiculous that we didn’t know. I’ve lived here for fourteen years. I think people might start parking in front of my house because the lines don’t go around my property.”

However, Witchford Parish Council applied last year to introduce street waiting restrictions in parts of the village.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines.  They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding.  PHOTO: Terry Harris Witchford, Ely Saturday April 20, 2024.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines. They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding. PHOTO: Terry Harris
Witchford, Ely Saturday 20 April 2024.

And their plans were approved by Cambridgeshire County Council in December.

A county council report said the restrictions were intended “to tackle cases of indiscriminate parking, mainly near junctions”.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines.  They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding.  PHOTO: Terry Harris Witchford, Ely Saturday April 20, 2024.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines. They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding. PHOTO: Terry Harris
Witchford, Ely Saturday 20 April 2024.

The restrictions prohibit parking at any time (double yellow lines) at the Common Road/Field End junction and along Field End, including the junctions of Granary End, Quinton Road and Victoria Road.

Witchford Parish Council held a preliminary consultation in July 2023.

“The response was strong support from residents for parking restrictions, particularly in Field End, opposite Quinton Road,” the county council report said.

County Council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines.  They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding.  PHOTO: Terry Harris Witchford, Ely Saturday April 20, 2024.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines. They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding. PHOTO: Terry Harris
Witchford, Ely
Saturday April 20, 2024.

“The parish council received 23 responses, of which 17 supported double yellow lines and 6 opposed.”

The report said that before new parking restrictions were introduced, the council was legally required to publish an intention notice to inform interested parties.

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It allowed the public to formally object to the proposals or submit other written views within at least 21 days’ notice.

The county council also consulted organizations such as emergency services and others involved in the proposals.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines.  They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding.  PHOTO: Terry Harris Witchford, Ely Saturday April 20, 2024.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines. They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding. PHOTO: Terry Harris
Witchford, Ely Saturday 20 April 2024.

A notice was published in the Ely Standard on 20 September 2023 and the statutory consultation period ran until 12 October 2023.

The municipality’s website contains announcements and additional information. Households likely to be directly affected were consulted individually by letter.

A total of four written responses were received, three of which expressed objections and one in support of the proposals.

“A total of 38 households and businesses received consultation letters, so the number of objections received was relatively small,” the provincial government said.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines.  They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding.  PHOTO: Terry Harris Witchford, Ely Saturday April 20, 2024.

County council contractors are planning a return visit to Witchford near Ely to complete the installation of the yellow lines. They missed some spots because cars were parked there when they came to carry out the cladding. PHOTO: Terry Harris
Witchford, Ely Saturday 20 April 2024.

“After reviewing the details of the proposals and taking into account the written responses received, the traffic manager, following consultation with councilor Lorna Dupre, decided that the waiting restrictions should be introduced.”

According to the report, key points of discussion included the fact that at the intersection of Field End and Common Road “there appears to be a common problem with indiscriminate parking, possibly related to the nearby business park.

“The parked vehicles obstruct the view for motorists leaving Field End and typically cause vehicle conflicts. The proposed double yellow lines should ensure that the intersection remains clear of parked vehicles, while still allowing parking in less critical locations.

“At the junctions of Field Road, Granary End, Quinton Road and Victoria Green, parking issues are less apparent.

“Sometimes there seems to be a lot of parking on the street, but other times less. It is generally accepted that some of the parking is provided by professionals working in the area, so it may be temporary.”

The report added: “However, parking does cause vehicle conflict and the situation is expected to worsen over time. Most, if not all, nearby properties have on-site parking, so the double yellow lines are unlikely to cause any serious inconvenience to locals. Unrestricted on-street parking will continue to be available in Field End and other roads.”

Earlier this year the parish council agreed to pay £3,391 to install the double yellow lines.

But some residents remain concerned as another tells the BBC the yellow lines extend past her property, meaning she can no longer legally park in front of her home.

“We have lived here for 24 years and now have double yellow lines around the entire boundary of our house,” she said.

“My husband has to park his car further down the road, out of our sight, and the first night it was vandalized when someone scratched the trunk