New parking measures in a coastal resort are to be trialled for 18 months from today.

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An “experimental order”, announced by Waveney District Council, will introduce a number of designated parking areas in order to restrict or prohibit parking in some locations at Blackshore Harbour in Southwold.

The parking restrictions come following £15,000 of government funding to repair damage to the fishing stage, the harbour office and Walberswick Quay.

Stephen Ardley, deputy leader of Waveney, said: “The need for parking restrictions was raised after several incidents in 2013 when emergency vehicles were unable to access the harbour area due to poorly parked cars.

“In the summer season, the harbour area is hugely popular with visitors and this can often lead to blocked or restricted traffic access.

“As a result of this, the council felt it was necessary to introduce new parking regulations to ensure the harbour area remains accessible to everyone.”

As well as checking existing car parks, parking wardens will now monitor Blackshore.

The harbour master will also have the authority to issue parking tickets.

The parking zones could also become permanent after the trial period.

Southwold deputy mayor Simon Tobin said: “Eight- thousand day trippers visit Southwold each day at the height of summer. The harbour, being a popular holiday destination, is very busy and there has been one or two quite concerning issues with emergency vehicles not being able to get through.

“Parking is vitally important.

“Southwold Town Council encourages designated restricted parking at the harbour, as long as it doesn’t impede on the general ambience of the harbour.”

An East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust spokesman said: “We’re not aware of any specific incidents where emergency vehicles have struggled with access at Southwold harbour.However, we welcome any initiative that makes it easier for us and our fellow blue-light colleagues to access emergencies quickly and safely.”

Visit the harbour and ports section at www.waveney.gov.uk for more information on the experimental order.

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