Tourists warned ‘park responsibly’ after traffic chaos in Dedham

PUBLISHED: 19:16 02 August 2020

Parking chaos in Dedham, near the River Stour, is causing uproar with residents. Picture: ARCHANT

Parking chaos in Dedham, near the River Stour, is causing uproar with residents. Picture: ARCHANT


Tourists are being urged to leave Dedham and “return another day” if they are unable to park responsibly, following safety concerns over the volume of traffic along the River Stour.

Parking chaos in Dedham, near the River Stour, is causing uproar with residents. Picture: ARCHANTParking chaos in Dedham, near the River Stour, is causing uproar with residents. Picture: ARCHANT

Hundreds of visitors flocked to the beauty spot on the Suffolk/Essex border during the bursts of sunshine this weekend – with residents concerned the area had become “like Butlins”.

One villager said it had become impossible to use one of the main roads in and out of the village, adding the parking had become “incredibly dangerous”.

MORE: Tourists create parking chaos in Dedham, with locals saying it’s now ‘like Butlins

Linda Hill, who is a resident of the village, said she is concerned that the emergency services would not be able to pass through Dedham Road.

She said: “The emergency services would have dreadful trouble trying to get through.

“It has got to a point now that something desperately needs to be done. Lives could be at risk.”

Meanwhile, Mark Cole, a local driving instructor who is based in Wrabness but has students in the village, said the road is a “ticking time-bomb”.

“With children and dogs milling around, and drivers parking with scant regard for road safety, the only thing that surprises me is that there hasn’t been a severe incident yet,” said Mr Cole.

“Even as an instructor I avoid the area whenever possible. It only adds to the risk.”

The stretch of the road on the Suffolk side of the river falls under Ipswich Borough Council (IBC) parking control, who say they have been working closely with the North Essex Parking Partnership to seek a coordinated approach.

The council is urging people to “park responsibly” so as to not endanger the safety of others.

A spokesman for IBC said: “IBC provides Civil Parking Enforcement within Babergh and Mid Suffolk as part of an agreement between Suffolk County Council (SCC), Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Council and IBC.

“We have been and will continue to work with NEPP on a co-ordinated approach to civil parking enforcement on the Suffolk side of this road, where the border between Suffolk and Essex is the bridge across the river.

“We have also been liaising with SCC (whose responsibility it is to put in place parking restrictions on the highway) about the parking restrictions that are currently in place to see if any improvements or enhancements can be made in order to improve safety in the area.

“We would urge visitors to this area to park responsibly and if there isn’t anywhere to park safely then please come back another day so as not endanger the safety of others by parking irresponsibly.”

A North Essex Parking Partnership spokesman added: “The NEPP is responsible for the enforcement along the Essex stretch of the road but we have been working with IBC to seek to have a coordinated approach to enforcement along the whole road.

“Motorists need to take responsibility for following the regulations where they park, but we will work with our partners in Ipswich to see how the issues that appear to have happened on Saturday can be avoided in the future.”

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