Parking restrictions farce returns in Hatfield Road

Social distancing measures in place on Hatfield Road, St Albans.

Social distancing measures in place on Hatfield Road, St Albans. - Credit: Archant

Weeks after highways bosses imposed excessive parking restrictions in St Albans’ Hatfield Road, they were back to inflict more chaos this week.

The controversial parking restrictions were brought in by Herts county council (HCC) last month to aid social distancing but triggered a deluge of complaints from businesses.

Barriers had been installed closing off parking bays between Sutton Road and Clarence Road in a bid to widen pedestrian throughfares.

Traders in Hatfield Road rely on customers driving to purchase supplies of Halal and Asian goods not available elsewhere locally, and the restrictions had a massively detrimental effect on their trade.

But following intervention from local Lib Dem district councillors, the county council removed some of the restrictions.

Then this week the farce began all over again after HCC decided to improve the quality of the barriers.

Contractor Ringway were working to out-of-date maps and re-implemented some of the previous restrictions.

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They have since returned to restore the revised status quo.

Clarence ward councillor Chris White said: “The HCC plan now is to reduce the restrictions to three patches: one opposite Cavendish and Albion; one outside Tesco; one opposite Morrisons. All have issues to a degree but the last is the one where we are getting most complaints.

“Fleetville is not like central St Albans - it’s steady trickle shopping rather than the city centre rush so the social distancing issues are close to trivial and don’t need any help.”