Labour Minister Blames Bedwas Car-Owning Residents For Bedwas Parking Problems

24/01/2020

The parking problems blighting Bryn Heol residents in Bedwas was raised in the Senedd this week by Plaid Cymru AM Delyth Jewell.

Delyth Jewell, who is standing in Caerphilly at next year’s Senedd Elections, asked Deputy Minister for Transport Lee Waters what residents were supposed to do when they had nowhere they are allowed to park on the street and plans by Caerphilly Council to provide additional spaces had been scrapped.

Delyth Jewell said: “There's an issue in Caerphilly that I'm sure that you'll be aware of, where local residents are unable to park and it's in Bryn Heol in Bedwas, where the residents have just been left exasperated by Caerphilly County Borough Council's indecision or the lack of any action to deal with the problem.

“They're told they can't park outside their houses on the street, but they also can't park on the pavement for obvious reasons. And the council had announced that they were going to be taking action to help them, but then they've withdrawn from doing that.

“So, obviously, whilst I completely support what the Government is doing in terms of its ambition to ban pavement parking, would the Deputy Minister agree with me that, in order for this to work, appropriate parking spaces have to be provided by local authorities so that residents can park safely outside their own homes?”

In his response, Deputy Minister for Transport Lee Waters said: “I think we shouldn't knock local authorities here because they are in a very difficult position. The problem at heart is the number of cars many of us now own. And the streets simply were not designed to cater for the volume of vehicles that are trying to squeeze into a street that was designed for the horse and cart.

“So, it's not simply a case of providing extra land for more car parking, because where will that end? And is this the best use of land in our community - providing it for cars?”

He later added: “I think the advent of electric cars and driverless cars, where cars are far less likely to be owned, they're more likely to be leased and shared because the capital costs will be so high—it will be on-demand, responsive transport, and this is only 15 to 20 years away. So, technology does offer us some solution here.”

 

Responding to the Deputy Minister’s remarks, Plaid Cymru Community Councillor for Bedwas Trethomas and Machen Daniel Llewellyn said: “Caerphilly council has raised the hopes of residents over the issue of parking bays only to disappoint them. This is an issue that has been going on for almost 15 years and needs sorting now.

“The Minister talks about the advent of electric cars and driverless cars which is all very good but residents in Bryn Heol would still need somewhere to park them! Caerphilly council can find the money to pay the former chief executive, so they can do the same for residents of Bryn Heol.”