Anger over student parking ‘shambles’ in Hatfield

PUBLISHED: 10:24 13 March 2017 | UPDATED: 10:24 13 March 2017

The residents of The Downs are fed up with the number of cars parking on their road.

The residents of The Downs are fed up with the number of cars parking on their road.

Danny Loo Photography 2017

Residents are furious at “inconsiderate” parking by students turning their road in Hatfield into a “shambles”.

The grass verges on The Downs have been ruined by cars parking on them.The grass verges on The Downs have been ruined by cars parking on them.

People living in The Downs, opposite the university and its new accommodation blocks, are fed up with verges being turned into mud baths.

Dennis Hedges, 81, of The Downs, said: “The increased student intake has also increased the volume of student transport, which in turn further blocks the limited parking facilities The Downs has to offer.”

Christine Clark, 71, who has lived in The Downs for three years, said: “We know it is the students because in the summer and Christmas holidays there are no problems with parking.

“My husband has Parkinson’s so we manage to park in a lay-by because we requested a disability space for him but when guests come to see us they have to park quite far away.”

The grass verges on The Downs have been ruined by cars parking on them.The grass verges on The Downs have been ruined by cars parking on them.

Dennis added: “Some of these vehicles remain stationary all week.

“Yellow tickets were put on offending vehicles some weeks ago which caused a brief respite, but have now been completely ignored by some vehicle owners.”

Retired printer Derek Chambers, 76, of The Downs, said: “The place is a shambles. Elderly people are having to walk in the mud and risk slipping over.”

A University of Hertfordshire spokesperson said: “We’re working with the police and Welwyn 
Hatfield Council to develop a long-term plan to improve current parking issues.

“Work is also underway to reassess how on-campus parking is designated, to determine whether additional spaces can be provided for student parking.

“The university takes community complaints incredibly seriously, and will investigate reports received.

“If students are found to be in breach of the code of conduct, the appropriate actions will be taken in line with the university’s internal procedures and regulations.”

A Welwyn Hatfield Council spokesman said: “The steep rise in car ownership has intensified parking pressures on roads across the country.

“We worked in this area when the university was redeveloped and the majority of responses were against the introduction of parking restrictions.

“The parking team are currently working on projects covering Hatfield Central and East and when these projects come to a close new wards within Hatfield will be added to the work programme.”

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