Basildon school locked in parking dispute calls on council to repaint road markings
A SCHOOL embroiled in a bitter dispute over “inconsiderate parent parking” claims it has been let down by the council’s maintenance of road markings.
St Anne Line Catholic Junior School in Wickhay, Basildon, had filed numerous complaints over parking problems near the school in recent months.
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Parents have been blocking in residents, parking on the pavement preventing disability access, forcing parents with buggies to walk in the road, blocking the emergency access to the school at any time, and parking on the double yellow lines and zig zags outside the school.
In once extreme instance, a driver drove into the school’s parking signs placed in the road outside the school damaging it and driving off – they have yet to be identified.
Headteacher Nathalie Watson says the school is working as hard as possible to solve the issues but says she feels let down by Essex County Council.
“Unfortunately, the junior school's request to the council to maintain the fading double yellow lines, zig zags, and signage have been ignored, which just adds to the problem,” she told the Echo.
Essex County Council says the maintenance of road markings near the school is the responsibility of council-run organisation South Essex Parking Partnership – SEEP did not response to request for comment.
Residents have claimed the school has failed to address the problem sufficiently.
But Ms Watson defended her actions, stating her team was working “extremely hard” to ease the parking problem while prioritising the safety of children.
To date the school has purchased no parking signs which are put up in the road, sent letters to residents, put members of staff on patrol, as well as physically blocking cars from entering the road to the school.
At least twice in the last four months the school has urged parents to take better care by highlighting “inconsiderate parking” in its newsletters.
In a letter to frustrated residents, she said: “The junior school continues to encourage parents to park at the church, but unfortunately there will be infant school parents, as well as other members of the public, coming into the road with which I have no direct communication with, in order to encourage them to also use the church facilities for parking.
"It is equally frustrating for the Junior School as it is for local residents.”